Posts tagged addiction

Raise Your IQ, Genius!

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“Okay, so you’re a rocket scientist. That don’t impress me much.” – Shania Twain


You have got genius inside of you! That is a fact. Discovering the roots of that genius and cultivating it depends upon your IQ. I am not referring to the standardized, culturally-biased Intelligence Quotient. Neither am I referring to any particular cognitive talent you may have; there are plenty of talented people who forfeit the strength, endurance, and power to develop their gift(s). What sets the thriv-ers apart from the languish-ers is their Investedness Quotient.


Just as money invested wisely yields dividends that contribute to personal wealth, your Self invested wisely yields dividends that contribute to personal enrichment. When people criticize others saying–“She is so self-centered.” “He is so self-involved.” “How selfish can you be?”–they speak about a particular kind of behavior pattern that alienates others. Self-investedness, however, conveys a focus on the Self regarding what matters most to us, what relationships and activities we pursue, and what dedication of time we allow based on our values, principles, and ideals.


I know a young man who is a self-involved drug addict. (As it happens, addicts tend to have low Investedness Quotients.) When I inquired into his motives for developing a drug habit, he blamed it on boredom. My response, had I the opportunity to do it over, would have been, “Get a LIFE, man!” This perpetually regressive adolescent, no doubt, self-medicates pain that he discusses with nobody. But more than that, he lacks self-investedness, and this down-fall defines him unless and until he takes steps to invest in himself.


What do such steps look like?

  • A rational decision to love ourselves enough not to pollute and impair ourselves.
  • A regular involvement in pro-social activities–to leave situations better than how we encountered them.
  • A daily commitment to be of service to at least one other human being.
  • A generous dedication of time and attention to a rewarding skill or ability.
  • A judicious willingness to share about our pain (sorrows, frustrations, anger, etc.) with a person wiser than us.
  • A heartfelt endeavor to assume responsibility for shortcomings and to make amends as warranted.
  • A bold admission that, if there is a Higher Power, each of us is not it.
  • A continuing inquiry into what these steps look like in our uniquely personal experience.



As for the genius inside us, it is our birthright. We may not conceive of its wherewithal, but we are called to find it. Just as the best possible way to manage a problem–the optimal coping strategy–always exists, and we are called to find it. We were not made to languish but rather to thrive. To the degree that we are disconnected from that, we need to raise our IQ. Take a risk. You are the best investment you could ever make! (https://twitter.com/ Good_Vibes_Only)

If you are ready and willing to self-reflect, re-evaluate your behavior, and make judicious decisions about your Life, please Contact Vanessa Landau, Resiliency Trainer, for Co-Creative Transformation, and we will develop a “portfolio” that makes you rich.

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Grasping At Water


Often circumstances in life are beyond our control, and the unknown or unfavorable outcomes can instill discomfort. One human response is to control whatever we can control as compensation for that discomfort. In 1988 I experienced a great lack of control in various areas of my life–e.g., family, school, friends, self-image. My attempt to grasp control expressed itself as an eating disorder. The one thing I could absolutely control was food. I believed I was in control but, in fact, when I tried to stop restricting food and vomiting what I did eat, I discovered that I was powerless. The addiction had taken over control.

Another way in which we attempt to grasp control over circumstances is to anticipate all possible outcomes and thoroughly prepare, particularly for the outcomes we FEAR. We think that if we are ready for the imagined misfortune or catastrophe, somehow we will be able to control it. The truth is that, while some preparatory measures suggest intelligence and reduce the element of surprise, focusing on the outcomes we fear render us no more effective in controlling them than if we focus on the outcomes we desire.

Some people become so radicalized by a FEAR of lack of control that they impose control on others. Have you ever known anyone who has a monopoly on how to fold clothes? fill the dishwasher? re-close the cereal box? Have you ever known anyone who arbitrarily tells you what to do because they have appointed themselves to be in control. My housemate forbade me to use my laptop at the dining table–even when nobody was eating there–because I had a computer table upstairs.

Control presents a tricky dynamic. Societal influences suggest that we are in control of our own destinies; that we create our own lives; and that, when we feel disappointed, despondent, or devastated, we must accept the responsibility for that. Such notions deliver half-truths. We shape our destinies given what circumstances arise. We make choices about action given the access to resources at our disposal. We remain responsible for our actions and attitudes, and how we learn our lessons.

A fundamental tool that helps me to manage control lies in The Serenity Prayer:

  • Grant me serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
  • courage to change the things I can,
  • and wisdom to know the difference.

  • When I find myself in circumstances that I cannot control, I habitually invoke The Serenity Prayer. With practice, I have learned to manage my FEAR of unknown or unfavorable outcomes in constructive ways, and have ceased obsessive controlling behaviors and controlling the behavior of others.

    Healthy coping strategies involve surrendering control where we have none and ceasing attempts to control others. If you would like to foster skills that support these strategies, please contact me, Vanessa Landau, Resiliency Trainer, for Co-Creative Transformation, and I will guide you in the development of coping tactics.

    To view other blog entries, click on the left or right titles above the current blog title.

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