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 31st 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.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

Spending Time

A week or two ago Elon Musk was informed that the stock in his company had risen so high that he was now the richest man in the world.

He responded by saying "Isn't that something." Then the next thing he said was "Well I guess I better get back to work."

Now many people might wonder at his reaction when he got the news. I think a lot of people would jump up and down and express a great deal of excitement. But I think that people who react that way look at money as the most important thing there is. Whereas, someone like Musk probably views time as most valuable thing in the world.

I've read many stories about how he uses his time. When he first started Tesla he used to work at his office something like 24 hours a day. He even had a mattress beside his desk in case he got really tired he could take a quick nap and get back to work. When he did go spend time home he often worked until late in the night until he resolved whatever challenges he was facing producing his automobile. I don't know if he works that many hours today but I believe that time is one thing that he doesn't waste under any circumstances.

So what's the point of talking about this in this blog? Well, in my mind we addicts waste a lot of years and hours and days of our time trying to feel better than we do at the moment. But the problem is that no matter how much time we spend we can never feel quite as good as we did the first time we used our favorite drug.

At TLC the people who eventually become successful at staying sober dedicate a lot of their spare time going to meetings and focusing on living a different life. Those who stay with us a few years usually find employment in the private sector and a new way to spend their time.

The one thing that we cannot replace is time. And if we waste our time playing video games or watching television, are we making a good use of our time? I doubt if any of us are so dedicated to a mission that we are going to work at it most of our waking hours. 

But if we have a simple mission of changing our lives and staying away from alcohol and drugs we will learn that just a few hours a week dedicated to recovery is adequate.

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