Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 900-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 30th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Bored with Sobriety?

A younger client who’s been sober a while commented that at times life seemed “very boring.” When people tell me they’re bored I share with them what my grandmother told me when I said something like that to her. She said I was bored because I was boring.

Then I was in my late teens and I know I took offense at her statement. Probably because my ego said I wasn’t very boring at all. I was a pretty interesting and exciting guy, at least so I thought. But she was right. I was boring during my late teens. I was already damaged goods and had been in and out of juvenile institutions for drug and alcohol related offenses.

Today life isn’t boring. I have so many things going on there’s never an uninteresting moment. There are writing projects, workouts, groups to run, social activities, and vacations to plan – self-generated activities that keep life stimulating. I no longer view life as something that’ll happen down the road. This isn’t a dress rehearsal; life's right now. And we need to relish each moment no matter what our age.

So I told our young client to fill the space he used fill with drugs and alcohol with service work, education and self-improvement projects that’ll enhance his life so he’ll become more interesting – perhaps even to himself.