At any given point over the past 7 years I have deprived myself of something. I’m often asked, “Why would you ever want to go without ___?!” or told, “Well, I could never go without ___! I need it to live!”

This is exactly why I am depriving myself. Because at one point I also said to these things. “Well I could never go without alcohol!” or asked, “Why would you ever want to go without masturbation for a year?!” I had accepted these things as necessary for my survival due to chemical dependence or habitual abuse. I said the same thing about sugar (3 months of ketogenic diet), speaking out loud (12 day silent meditation retreat), and a few dozen other random things.

I lived.

As I write this I have just finished a year of sobriety (from alcohol), and have decided I don’t want to go back. For the better part of 15 years I just considered alcohol a part of my life. Now it’s not. I also learned a lot about myself.

It doesn’t mean I won’t ever have another drink again, but in challenging my preconceived notions about who I am (and what I’m capable of) i have discovered a lot about myself.

What is something you think you need? Can you imagine a life without it? If not, then perhaps it’s time to find out what it would be like.

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