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Decision Making – Learning the Hard Way.

1 February 2016

I had a bit of an anxious breakdown about the house sale this past week. I signed a contract with a buyer, and then was immediately wracked with the inability to sleep because I felt I’d been less than completely forthcoming about my disclosures. I was terrified that they’d find something, I’d get sued, and there would be a total clusterfuck. So I updated my disclosures and sent them to the buyer.

The buyer terminated. I’m quite happy they did (there was also a question over a tax issue). I felt that I had broken trust and I didn’t want to negotiate a sale with a buyer that didn’t trust me. That’s just setting myself up for a disaster. So now I have a clean slate, a completely forthcoming disclosure, and a clear conscience. But my process meant that I had to go through a deep and difficult bout of anxiety.

This happens to me a lot. I make bad decisions, like deciding to disclose things on my house in a slippery way, because I rationalize to myself that I’ll get what I want. Then my anxiety spikes, I can’t sleep, I panic, and I have to set things right. My honesty is subject to my fear and misery. Without that panic, I would not be thorough. That’s not a good way to be. But I suppose it’s better than just not giving a shit at all.

Sobriety requires rigorous honesty. And we alcoholics, including me personally, are liars. I have come to work hard at my honesty, and I often fail, like I did here. I wish I didn’t need the salt blast of terror and misery to come around to the honest way. But I did, and I do. And I don’t seem to learn from it. It takes the same thing every time. Maybe one day I’ll learn to avert the anxiety, and not just react to it.

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