Fixing the Fixations

Since I haven’t used shaving cream all week (and yes, I’ve been shaving) I thought I would mention my experience here. Several days ago, I watched a video that someone had posted to facebook about these gels and foams and creams being unnecessary. The video producer was very emphatic that we are wasting our money and even damaging our skin with this stuff, I thought what the heck, I’ll try it!

I haven’t used aftershave in years, and now no shaving cream either, sweet! My morning routine is quicker, cheaper and better than ever. This is just one actionable item, out of hundreds of things that I have learned from YouTube.

Earlier this week, at the end of the day, I was stuck to the computer screen and my wife mentions that ‘You may have a YouTube addiction’. My wife is right. My response was something about the fact that I used to have other addictions too, that I have now let go of. I used to like drinking and smoking and reckless living. I guess I have been addicted to things almost as long as I can remember.

Maybe instead of addiction, I could reframe the term and use ‘Fixation’. I can quickly sometimes choose to be fixated on an idea or a project or even the search for an idea, and all my other priorities fade into the background. Even though I may have been four and half years free of alcohol, or seven years free of cigarettes, I have not lost my ability to fixate in the least.

I have heard that at the AA meetings, people introduce themselves as an alcoholic, even when they have been sober for years. I guess this is a way to notice that fixation on a drug is possible, even after a long break from it.

Right now I am drinking from a colorful can of La Croix Curate naturally essenced sparkling water. I love these things. They are 0% everything on the nutrition label and refreshing to drink, now that I have become appreciative of the taste. When I first tried them, the sting of the carbonation was too strong for the ever so slight fruitiness of flavor. They are a ‘dry’ beverage, they aren’t sweet and a flavor that most people would pass on.

Actually, these little cans of hippy water remind me of my first experiences as a teenager of drinking beer. Natural Light or Busch or Bud or any of those things don’t actually have a good flavor. You could give a baby a sip of beer and their face will twist up in disgust. I remember having to learn to like the taste of beer because I wanted to drink it and be like the ‘guys’. Sure, once you’ve had anything in enough frequency and quantity, you begin to develop fondness and mental urges that suggest it’s good!

Good times with friends stir together with memories of beer, wine and music. Heck, I could go for cold mug of suds right now!

Buuuuut, I won’t.

Isn’t it funny, that a toxin and literal poison, can be so intriguing and beloved? I like drinking these little cans of La Croix in any flavor, like Pomme Baya or Cran-Raspberry, because of the tickle and burn. If I swish the bubbly drink around, it feels like a beer in the mouth. I reminisce with these silly sodas…

I guess I could say that I am Aaron Nichols and I’m an alcoholic… but whatever. That doesn’t seem empowering to me right now.

What I would rather notice, is that fixations can be positive or they can be negative. Fixation for a 12 year old boy could result in a life of major league baseball success, or of a life spent in and out of prison. Fixations like YouTube can overtake my free time. The computer is always on, another video is always suggested immediately. I miss moments right before bed to converse with my wife, and end the long day together.

But, I have now saved us tens of dollars per year, by giving up shaving cream! YES! The enormous value of this online video resource is staggering!!

Actually… uhhh… I guess I’d better get off this computer and back to my real life. Where my cute daughter will be waking soon and the real business that I manage is about to open for the day.

Till next week my friends be well, and may God Bless you.


Aaron Nichols

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