Sun, November 24, 2013
The Pink Cloud
I read the term ‘Pink Cloud’ recently while reading Terry Gross’s book “All I Did Was Ask”; interviews from her syndicated NPR radio program ‘Fresh Air’. 

Intriguing to say the least because I had never heard the term before, so I did what I normally do, I Googled it.

 Here is the definition from the Urban Dictionary:

“Pink Cloud”
“12 step recovery jargon referring to someone new who talks about how great life is, now that they're sober. Usually meaning that the person is out of touch with reality,”
“The new guy seems pretty happy for a dude who has no job, no money and no family. He must be on a pink cloud.”

Ouch, kinda harsh, but a term that obviously resonated with me since I am focusing this week’s blog around it, it made me think of my 15 years of sobriety and sharing this story.

Becoming sober was easy for me, understanding my sobriety now that was another whole story.  I never had the experience of the ‘Pink Cloud’, and it took a long time to understand my personal complexities, emotional issues, and behavioral compulsions.  Sobriety is a really tricky thing, compulsive behaviors can destroy your life, or if channeled in a positive direction save your life. For me it was always about choice; and it took quite a while to come to grips with who I am and that moving in the positive direction is completely achievable. 

It is all about education and accountability.

I have shared this journey before, the following is an excerpt of a blog I wrote three years ago, and it fed into chapter 22 of my book ‘Maximize Your Quality of Life, The 200% Solution’, published last year.   Both blog and chapter were titled:

“My Demon Alcohol”

“I am a problem drinker, being a very, almost obsessive compulsive, ( if there is such a thing), tends to feed into the demon of my alcohol abuse.  It has been almost thirteen years since I “Indulged”, and frankly when helping others with their health and fitness compulsive behaviors are common.
I started drinking at the tender age of sixteen, and frankly did not like the effects, at first.  At that time, (late 70’s) it was a different time and alcohol use and abuse was common and accepted, almost encouraged.  It was the socially acceptable thing to do, so I became accustomed to using and started the slow descent into problem drinking.

I drank consistently and at times abusively for twenty years, ( and for that let me say I am sorry to everyone I may have been a jerk off to),  so when I finally did quit, I was surprised at how easy it was, I just decided one day to stop, period.   However the demon was still in my mind and not until I saw a psychologist for 6 months did I come to understand my “why”.

He explained to me there are two types of people as far as alcohol abuse is concerned, the alcoholic, and the problem drinker, binger, and the drunk.  One is a sickness and a chemical dependency, the other is a compulsive destructive behavior that when you start you can’t stop; its hammer town or nothing.   Both are terrible and potentially deadly.

My therapist made me understand my internal “why”, the OCD behavior that is what makes me, me.  That knowledge, that understanding, has helped me to grow as an individual, understand that compulsions that are channeled into a positive energy can be a very good thing, that everyone has the potential for some sort of behavior disorder; it is just understanding your “why”.

I love being sober, love my life and my family my job, my friends and all of you who follow my writings, those who want to improve their lives.
If I still was consuming I would have never married my wife almost ten years ago, she would not have had me.  The point of this whole blog is growth and change.  That anything is possible, that achieving unreachable goals is possible, that finding people and finding yourself is truly possible.
Channeling your growth and your life into the positive is completely achievable, you just have to try.

I will revisit this topic, obviously there is so much more that can be discussed, however I am at my word limit.  I just want to say if you are in that place and you don’t like it you can change, never give up, we all have so much to give, and life is a beautiful thing.
Much love to you all,”

Owning my issues took seeking professional help, because not understanding the complexities of compulsive behavior is confusing but completely doable.  Seeking therapy not only saved my life it opened a whole new world of possibilities.  If you are having similar issues I encourage you to seek help, understand, and accept yourself for who you are. 

Channeling compulsive energy is a really good thing, and we need all the positive energy we can muster in our country and world.

As boomers we need to lead, it is never too late to change!

Peace

Tom Matt is the host of the daily radio talk show ‘Boomers Rock’ where he interviews experts in all fields that pertain to baby boomer quality of life and is heard on the CoSozo Radio Network.  He encourages messages and feedback, loves sharing success stories and can be emailed at tom@boomersrock.us.

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