“The only way to permanently break the cycle of escapism is to develop a positive perception of reality. If you associate reality with pain, you will constantly desire to escape. It’s essential to find happiness in reality that outweighs the suffering caused by its problems. Find the things in life that give you true joy rather than temporary pleasure. These are the actions that will build up your belief in a positive reality. Changing your attitude towards reality is easier said than done. When you’re accustomed to the cycle of pain and escape, reality feels hopeless. The truth is that reality is neither bad or good, but an equal mix of the two. Your attitude is a reflection of the parts that you choose to focus on. By fixing your attention on sources of hope and joy, you can create positive beliefs and reduce the desire to escape.
Another mistake people make is waiting for the future. Do you have a picture of the “ideal life” you’d like to live? Is there an “ideal you” that you want to become? Most people live based on the past, waiting for a revelation to make them who they want to be. It doesn’t work this way. Your actions in the present determine the future. The only way to create the future you want is to start living it right now. Once you start living according to the future you want to create, it’s easy to spot the behaviors that detract from it. When you realize that giving up bad habits is a necessary and inevitable part of creating the life you desire, addiction begins to lose it’s power over you. Temporary pleasure and escape doesn’t have the same appeal. The more progress you make towards your ideal future, the weaker the desire to escape from reality. Just like the cycle of escapism, the pattern is self-reinforcing. Over time, you are able to delight in habits that are congruent with your vision — that strengthen a positive reality instead of numbing pain. Eventually there is no need or desire to rely on addictions for relief and pleasure can be enjoyed for its own sake.” Pickthebrain.com
I am deep in the cycle of escapism. I equate my reality with nothing but pain. Pain at losing the life I knew and the dream I had deep in my heart. Pain at losing half of my baby girl’s life to my abuser. Pain at having to start over AGAIN for what feels like the umpteenth time. Pain at having to figure out who I really am because I don’t know myself at all although I’ve seen glimpses. I am operating from a state of learned helplessness – why bother to try again when it will turn out exactly the same as before.
I’d rather pretend that things aren’t what they are right now. That I wasn’t caught in the middle of a domestic abuse situation. I don’t want to deal with my problems let alone all of the problems of my kids’ behaviors as a result of the abuse. This shit is hard and it’s scary and I don’t know if I’m strong enough to keep going. I feel overwhelmed every time I start to tackle this mess that is my life. I just want to sit down in the middle of the road and cry.
I need to develop a positive perception of reality – a reason to get out of bed each morning. I need to stop wallowing in what has happened to me…the things I had no control over. I instead need to focus on me and the kids to help us all get through this time in our lives. We need to find the happiness in our new reality and focus on the things that give us true joy. How do I do that? How do I create present that is so good that it overshadows all the shit that happens? How do I begin to feel in control of my own life when many of the decisions concerning my life are made for me?
I need to find my reason to hope again so that I won’t feel the overwhelming urge to escape. I can’t remain tied to the past and expect to make things better for our future. I have to believe in myself and my ability to overcome this situation.