Dear Diary, : Jimmy Carr – Naval Gazing

#1 Who are you when no-one is watching? Because, this is the real you. Now whether you like this or you don’t, he has a point. Whether you’re a prolific nose picker or mega sweet fiend I’m afraid this is who we truly are. No seriously though it definitely got me thinking, so give it a go, make a physical or mental list of what you do when no-ones watching, how you feel when no-one is around and that will tell you what you need to know, even if it’s that you do nothing, that in itself is key. #2 ‘Google operates as a modern day confessor’. So yes many years spent in therapy, reading books and working on self-development when actually all we really need to do is check our Google history. Now of course it’s a real example but also a metaphor as we do actually know what we have been searching without actively checking on our Google history, but the concept is genius in my view. All the emails from Susan referencing women all over the world searching for ‘do I drink too much alcohol’, it’s right there, you are addicted to alcohol. But other things too, when I checked my metaphorical Google history it left me disappointed and a little sad, you’ll see why in a minute. So my Google history said: Body dysmorphic. Hear me out here. I haven’t been diagnosed with this but if anyone was checking my Google history I am sure they would have no hesitation in labelling me with this or at least referring me for some psychological input. Searches I had in my Google history: Breast uplifts, Botox, cheek fillers, jaw fillers, fat dissolver injections, eyebrow micro-blading, low carb eating and how to get rid of piles (sorry about that last one!). That list made me wince for sure and not just because of the piles. Bringing up two daughters this list scares me even more, especially seeing as I am actually perfectly fine and this is actual madness, this needs to stop for their sake. Next up, identity crisis. Searches I had in my Google history: Avoidant attachment styles, fixing yourself in relationships, forgiving partners, should I stay or should I go, signs of bipolar, signs of EUPD, signs of ADHD. Society has a lot to answer for here, labels, diagnostics when all we are really doing is being human. Experiencing emotions, living humans. Normal (for the most part). Love Emma xxx

There’s a term we use in the counselling and therapy world and it’s known as Naval Gazing. You will notice I love a little reference to theory here and there.Anyway naval gazing is not as you would imagine the ogling of persons within the Royal Navy, it is in fact as the Oxford English Dictionary tells us ‘the activity of spending too much time considering your own thoughts, feelings and problems’. Now as people recovering and stopping drinking I feel this is all we are ever doing and a lot of it necessary of course. So whilst it sounds a little negative in its Oxford version I would imagine this is helpful for so many of us not just in recovery but in our day to day lives. But, and here’s the big but, it feels like we never stop, like we never switch off from the naval gazing. We talk about being in the moment and being mindful but how can we be in the moment and mindful if we are actively naval gazing all the time? Trying to figure out who we are, what we are all about and improve ourselves. All this can take years and years without ever getting where we need to be. There’s a quicker way according to comedian Jimmy Carr though. Now stick with me here as many of you will know him as a foul mouthed, rude on the edge of your seat (ready to walk out of the auditorium) type of comedian, us not him walking out I should clarify. I am the biggest fan of audiobooks and I recently listened to his ‘before and laughter’ and as it was a comedic self help book there were some real nuggets of knowledge and information that apply directly to us on our sober journey. I have to add here that the book gave me a whole new perspective on comedy and made me realise there’s more method to it than a person just insulting people for the sake of it. If you wish to learn something different, give it a listen or read, you might surprise yourself. But I digress. We spend all this time trying to figure ourselves out and understand ourselves when according to Jimmy all we really need to know or do to understand ourselves are the following three things.

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