Numbness is a Reward System

🤔What does feeling numbness look like to you?

👉Numbness is a reward system for your brain and can become a vicious cycle as the reward is NEVER lasting and often creates additional feelings of - guilt and shame.

Here is a quick snap shot of what it looked like for me -

⏰It is 2am. Can’t sleep. I feel alone and sad. I need this feeling to stop.

Get dressed, grab a pack of smokes, $500 left in my bank account till the end of the month, and hop in my car.

11 miles drive. When I arrive my glasses reflect the illuminations of the neon lights spelling out Casino.

I bee line over to the ATM.

I find the brightest, loudest machine, pull up a round stool and light up. 🚬🚬🚬🚬

The sad and lonely gets replaced with a sensations of the thrill of winning. Surrounded by the laughter of others winning and jackpot bells. Thoughts and feelings that I had an hour ago disappear and zombie brain takes over. And the satisfaction of repetition, hitting the big green button that says BET AGAIN.

💰$100 gone.

No bonus round yet. No jackpot yet.

💰$100 more gone.

Still feels good.

Back to ATM. Buy another pack of smokes.

💰$100 more gone.

Still feel so good.

💰And another $100

Back to the ATM and justify $40 more dollars to buy me just 20 more minutes of zombie brain (what I am really thinking is Jackpot is so close).

11 cents prints out on a receipt that I stick in my wallet to bring back for next time.

Then the guilt kicks in. I feel like I am going to puke as I slowly drive home in defeat.

The sad kicks back in and the alone as I crawl back into bed smelling of stale cigarettes. Fuck, I am still a loser.

A new sense of stress fills my brain - how I am going to make $60 last for the next 2 weeks?

✅Numbing our feelings is a slippery slope and often times an expensive one.

As I venture forward boldly in a new direction I find no more pull for such behaviors as I no longer wish/need/want to bury my feelings. I broke the vicious cycle.

✅Feelings are not as scary as we think they are.

✅They only get scary when we create shame around them, numb them, and don’t want to understand the thoughts behind them.

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