Sobriety Games: How Challenging Yourself Improves Your Brain and Body
Keeping sober is like playing a complex game of Pacman.
To begin with, your only goal is to stay alive and eat blobs of delicious energy.
However, as your skills improve, you will begin to recognize patterns and learn where and how to evade ghosts for maximum effect.
Sobriety is the same way.
At first, staying sober is a matter of survival.
However, as you develop, you become aware of recurring themes in your thinking and behavior and learn to employ these insights to your advantage.
And, truth be told, the hardest part of this journey is learning to question our own assumptions.
There is no way that we will suddenly realize, “Oh, I was totally wrong about everything”.
It involves asking ourselves tough questions and considering issues from various vantage points.
However, that’s part of the journey.
Considering the alternative, it’s clear that we need to push ourselves if we want to continue developing as people.
In addition, we are not progressing if we do not expand.
But be aware that it involves more than just your brain.
In addition, it has been supported by research in the scientific community that mindfulness and introspection practices have been linked to an increase in gray matter in the brain, specifically in regions associated with self-awareness and emotional regulation.
When we put our own assumptions to the test, we not only boost our mental health but also our overall fitness.
And, to be frank, the idea of neuroplasticity itself is pretty neat.
This means that we have a brain that can change and adapt to new information and experiences.
Therefore, when we put ourselves in situations where we are forced to learn and adapt, we are actively rewiring our brains for the better.
This is why one of my favorite phrases in sobriety is “Stay curious”.
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a protein that aids in the growth and survival of nerve cells in the brain, and regular exercise and physical activity can cause an increase in BDNF.
As a result, when we push ourselves physically, we reap benefits not only for our bodies but also for our minds.
The path to sobriety is one of introspection and development that calls for testing one’s own assumptions and values.
Although challenging, the effort will prove beneficial in the end.
Simply put, the more we put ourselves through trying situations, the more we learn about ourselves and the more agency we have in our daily lives.
PS: If you survived the struggle, you’ll survive the recovery.
Kohdi | Beyond Sober