Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Short-Supply Thinking.

Al-Anon was the first place I heard this term. It was explained to me as the driving force behind a lot of impulsive behavior - the idea that if I don't snatch at this whatever-it-is right now, I'll never get another chance at it.

Short-supply thinking side-steps my judgement, shuts off my ability to reason a problem through, and fills me with anxiety.
If an opportunity arises, I don't get a chance at it, and I'm operating under the premise of short-supply thinking, I can feel deprived, depressed, and resentful. I can waste my precious time looking backwards at what didn't happen, instead of living in the only time I truly have - this moment.

Jerry Seinfeld had a great routine about the phrase our mothers used: "Don't eat that, you'll ruin your appetite!" He joked that as an adult, if he wanted it, he ate it, because you know what? He'd discovered there'd be another appetite coming along later.

I loved this, and used it to help myself remember not to view the incidents in my life with short-supply thinking. If I couldn't join friends for an outing for some reason, that was ok, there'd be another outing coming along later. This applies to almost everything in life. Very few happenings are "one-time only."

Letting go of that frantic need to snatch before thinking, has kept me from having to experience the problems associated with impulsive behavior. I don't have to spend all that time wallowing in regret or remorse. I can stop, consider, decide, and maintain my serenity.


  1. I always get so much from your post. I am so thankful to have found you and I am thankful for each and every one of your post.

  2. Just wanted you to know I stopped by.


  3. I'm guilty of short supply thinking. Sometimes I think in terms of lost opportunities not realizing that those same opportunities will come about again. Thanks for this post. It helped me to think about this day and what it has to offer.