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Contrary Action


Contrary ActionContrary action is doing the opposite of what you instinctively want to do.  For example, if I’m on a workout schedule and I really don’t feel like working out, I will go against my innately lazy mindset and work out at the gym anyway.

In fact, I’m engaging in contrary action right now by writing this stupid article.  I hate computers and working a fake job like this, but I need money, so I’ll do it for now.  This is what the boss wanted me to write about, I’m trying to bang this article out, and there’s not much more to say.  I prefer a real job—either physical work or sales—because I’m not a fucking computer nerd.  I like to make money and right now I’m barely making anything.  So, what I’m doing at this moment is a perfect example of contrary action.

For other people in recovery, it could be stupid little things like calling their sponsors or going to stupid AA meetings or something else they don’t want to do.  It could be their diet, choosing to eat healthy foods instead of the unhealthy foods they crave.  I might really like fast food instead of something healthy, but I know I’m trying to eat right and get ripped, so I get a can of tuna or chicken instead of a tasty double cheeseburger.

I don’t know how this is supposed to help you stay clean from drugs.  I hate when people in recovery tell me to take contrary action and find myself hoping they relapse when they do.  I think that would be funny; I don’t like recovery and I hope to be leaving this place soon so I won’t have to hear all their bullshit.  I’ve been in and out of recovery for 16 years and I’ve heard a lot of bullshit from people and they suck.  After a while I get very angry and violent and I’ve come to believe that it’s very unhealthy for me to be in recovery – not to mention dangerous for those around me.

Contrary action for me could be to walk away instead of fucking somebody up because I’m mad at him.  I think I’ve pretty much got this under control now.  Fighting is fun but not good if someone calls the cops on you.  So I’ve learned that it’s better to try and walk away or talk to someone about it.  I just have to walk away because talking about it usually makes me angrier.

The hardest contrary action would be if you are ready to get high and instead of giving in to the urge, going to an NA meeting or calling somebody.  If you want to get high, why would you call somebody or go to a meeting – why wouldn’t you just get high?  Most people would go just get high.  I know I would – if I wanna get high, I’m gonna get high, and nothing will stop me.  Not contrary action, that’s for sure.  If I’m in that situation, I wouldn’t even try to do anything to stop myself.

Good thing I don’t want to get high right now, but I do want to hit someone.  l just started boxing, so this is my form of contrary action for now.  Hopefully, life will get better for me and everyone else out there who is angry or having a hard time locked up or on the streets.  Otherwise, there will be some damage done.


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Filed under: Recovery · Tags: anger, anger management, Contrary Action, fighting, getting high, Recovery is operated by Recovery Brands LLC, a subsidiary of American Addiction Centers, Inc.
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