What If Your Numbing Patterns Are What’s Sabotaging Your Happiness?

I’m writing this a day late. I’ll technically post it on Friday, the day it is meant to post … at 9 am. I almost always write my blogs the night before so I can schedule them to post at the correct time, to create consistency for myself and for readers. Well… almost always.

I have a problem with numbing, and the tools I use to numb are self-sabotage, oversleeping, and procrastination. Like the more well-known culprits, such as alcohol, television, and social media scrolling, they effectively kill my productivity, success, and self-esteem. Though my problems are not as obvious, they are deep-seated and incredibly difficult to transform. I can go without Netflix for weeks and not even notice. I don’t enjoy drinking at all anymore. But getting up early in the morning without any mandatory commitment? It honestly feels impossible, and I don’t know why.

We hold deep shame around our patterns of numbing, if we even realize we have them. Sometimes we don’t want to face them, so we simply ignore them and make another excuse for ourselves. I’m done hiding, and I’m done making excuses. The truth is that I struggle with this shit constantly and it’s getting old. I’m over it, but I haven’t gotten myself to change it yet.

I used to be so grateful that I don’t choose to numb with anything that’s physically harmful, such as drugs, alcohol, sex or something else of the sort. While I am obviously still happy about that, I would say that my less-obvious mechanisms are just as hurtful. I’m addicted to failing myself, over and over again. It feels familiar because I’ve been stuck in the pattern for so long. I’m addicted to staying in bed because it feels safe and I don’t have to face the reality of being an adult in this world. I know it sounds silly – I have to get up eventually. I have to deal with life eventually. But, you can say the same thing about any numbing device. I suppose you could stay high or drunk constantly … but your life will literally disintegrate around you. At some point, there is a reckoning for all of us, no matter our vice of choice.

Yes, on a logical level, I know that it’s up to me to change these harmful patterns. I’m aware that I’m the only thing standing in my own way, and that I’m guaranteeing my failure when I never try. I get that, but it doesn’t seem to make the shift any easier. Getting mad at myself doesn’t help. Giving myself permission doesn’t help. I’m honestly not sure what will.

My numbing habits are absolutely sabotaging the level of happiness I could reach without them. I’m not unhappy, but I’m far from satisfied. I invite you to look at where you numb and tune out in your life. Some numbing vices are more obvious, like those I listed above. Some are not – spiraling into anxiety and fear and paralyzing yourself from taking any action, for instance. Procrastination is a big one, I think, for many of us. No matter what your mechanism, there is a root problem or problems underneath it. My belief is that it all comes back to trauma, fear, lack of self-trust and self-love, and insecurity. , You are not alone in your numbing. We all do it, and we can all do better. Working on releasing numbing habits is not easy, and it may take efforts that are individualized to your personal struggles and history. Don’t give up on yourself. You are worth the work. Only when you take a good look at yourself and what’s going on in your life can you then begin to heal the root of the issue. It takes bravery, honesty, vulnerability, and a commitment to change – for you, and for me too.

I haven’t figured all this out yet, but I promise that if I do you’ll be the first to know. I’d love nothing more than for us all to vanquish our inner blocks and come out on the other side as more fulfilled and happier people! Take some time today to identify your own numbing devices and maybe write out a plan of action to gradually work on releasing them from your life. It’s a process, but it feels good to begin.

You can do this. So can I. We just have to believe we are worth it. Sending you love.

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