Are You In Denial?

denial1     Denial…It ain’t just a river in Egypt!  The degrees of it in our lives vary, but I firmly believe that every single human on Earth has experienced it at some point in our lives.  This is because, for a time, denial serves us.  We deny what we cannot accept or handle, and it protects us from ourselves.  But it cannot last forever.  At some point, the veil falls, and we become hyper-aware of whatever it is we were trying to deny, which can be so painful.  We may feel shame from it, or aggravated from it, but that can be normal when beginning to process things we have denied for so long!

Sometimes, it looks easier to be in denial.  As the saying goes, “Ignorance is bliss.”  Denial does not stay blissful for long.  It becomes a monster that grows and grows, skewing our behavior, creating chaos and unmanageability in our lives.  Denial and control go hand in hand; as long as we deny that we are being controlling and do not change our behavior, we will continue to control and deny as a form of trying to feel in control in the mess that we’ve gotten into.

How do we defeat denial, then?  What can we do to thrust ourselves from denial and into recovery from it?  The key is acceptance.  Rather than using all of our energy to fight against something that we cannot escape, we can accept that there is an issue, and go about trying to solve it.  We will save energy, and feel less chaotic if we begin to accept.  Accepting things about ourselves does not mean that we are giving up.  It means that we are standing up, willing and ready to fight whatever comes our way from a place of strength rather than anxiety.

I hope that today, you can challenge yourself to look inward and see if there is anything you think you’re having a hard time accepting.  If there is, remind yourself that it’s okay to accept ourselves for who we are, even if we feel as though we have to make changes in our behavior.  Once you start accepting, you can begin recovering!

Sherry Gaba, LCSW, Radio Host, Certified Transformation Coach and author of  the award winning book, The Law of Sobriety:Attracting Positive Energy for a Powerful Recovery and Ecourse www.wakeuprecovery.com. www.sherrygaba.com sherry@sgabatherapy.com.  Find out if you are #codependent. Take my quiz.  http://sherrygaba.com/co-dependency-quiz/

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About Sherry Gaba

Sherry Gaba, LCSW, is a licensed psychotherapist and life coach who has helped hundreds of people cope with lifelong addictions, including substance abuse, shopping, gambling, food, sex and love, co-dependency, eating disorders, depression, anxiety, single parenting and divorce. Sherry appeared on Celebrity Rehab 3, 4, and 5.   She also facilitated life coaching on their subsequent spin off Sober House and Celebrity Rehab’s Sex Addiction. During filming of the series, Sherry used her trademark sensitivity and compassion to help troubled cast members as they transitioned into their new sober lives with psychotherapy and life coaching tips.  Sherry most recently appeared on CNN Headline News as a guest expert, as well as Inside Edition, where she spoke about Mackenzie Phillip’s who was on Celebrity Rehab 3.  In addition, she appeared on KTLA Channel 5 as an expert on eating disorders and Fox San Diego News, Better TV, WPIX New York, CNN Prime News, Issues with Jane Velez Mitchell on HLN, Showbiz Tonight, and E!News discussing Celebrity Rehab and Teen Mom on MTV.  Sherry’s book, “The Law of Sobriety” from HCI Publications is about recovery from addictions and alcoholism and was published in September 2010.  Sherry has also been published in Cosmopolitan Magazine, Women’s World, Los Angeles Times Blog, New York Post, The Huffington Post, Hollywood Life, Elle On-line, E! On-line, and the New York Daily News.  She has also been a guest with Martha Stewart, Jay Thomas, and Judith Regan on Sirius XM Radio.  Sherry also blogs on Beliefnet.com, Counselor Magazine, and Renew Magazine.  In addition she just joined CBS Sky Radio and hosts “A Moment of Change,” a show on self discovery and positive transformation.