Wednesday, July 13, 2011

There's More to Quitting Drinking than Quitting Drinking

I am again enjoying Dr. Paul O's book, "There's More to Quitting Drinking than Quitting Drinking" Capizon Publishing, 1995.  I love Paul O's take on "Problems".  To quote just some:

"All my problems today are thinking problems. I don't even have a problem unless I think I do. If I think I have a problem. I have a problem. If I don't think I have a problem. I don't have a problem.  Never have I thought I had a problem and been wrong."

"Not only do I alone decide whether or not I have a problem: I alone determine the size of my problems.  I don't have many little problems; I don't bother with them. Like resentments, I stick to the "justifiable" variety. When I do have a little problem, all I have to do to make it a big problem is to think about it."

"As a boy, I read in Reader's Digest that you can judge a man by what makes him angry. From then on I searched from problems worthy of my anger. As a physician, I dedicated my life to working on problems, my own or anyone else's.  I became a problem magnet.  When I couldn't find enough of my own, I borrowed yours.  "My, that's an interesting problem you have here,; may I have it for a while? Meanwhile, I exaggerated, inflated, and manufactured problems while remaining on the lookout for more. And I always found them."

"Problems have always enjoyed a position of exaggerated importance in my life. Early on, I came to the conclusion that people with the most problems get the most attention.  People don't want to hear how easy your life is, they want to hear about problems. The TV evening news stresses nothing else. Facing problems is the stuff of which heroes are made.  Without problems you wouldn't have an identity. How can people think of you as being heroic if they don't know you're surviving in spite of it all? So tell them. Whine a little."

"I grew up thinking all men of intelligence and stamina worked on their problems by thinking about them until they came up with an answer.  I've discovered this approach works the opposite for me. Problems I think about grow bigger and bigger. Even non-problems. At first I'll think, "Well, that's certainly not a problem."  But in a short time I can see where, "It could be sort of a problem."  In no time I'm telling myself, "By golly, it's a good thing I'm looking at this.  Everyone else is missing it."

"One of the problems with problems is their high infant mortality rate. Ignored, they, like delicate plants, wither and die. Problems need a continuous flow of conversation, plus lots of water and fertilizer - especially fertilizer. They demand constant attention.  Problems need to feel important."


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