PastTense

Ground clutter 84/90

Blog Post created by PastTense on Mar 2, 2020

As expected, I am drowning and work and have been in head-down-full-speed mode for 5 hours. I’m coming up for some air and maybe a brisk walk around the shop to catch a second wind so I can go another couple of hours.

Back in the day, I would probably have used this kind of pressure to justify smoking. Because that makes so much sense. “I’m so busy I can’t even stop to pee, but I’ll take a 10 minute smoke break to help me cope with the pressure”. I know I am not the only one who has had these conversations with themselves. I shake my head at some of the truly stupid things I have said to myself to rationalize smoking.

Way back in the day when my daughter was young; I was her Girl Scout leader. Let me tell you; for all of my flaws (and they are legion), I was an amazing Girl Scout leader. We took a field trip to our local airport and got a tour of the Air Traffic Control Tower. The controllers were fantastic; they explained how airports work and what their job was. They explained about radar and told us about “ground clutter”. Ground clutter are radar returns from a bounce off a building or the ground. They produced images but not useful data and they can sometimes make it very difficult to see the actual target. ATC must learn how to tell a real aircraft from “clutter”.

When I think about quitting smoking; I know a lot of my issues stumbling blocks were just ground clutter. They were a radar bounce off of old habits that made it harder for me to see the target. For me, weight gain has been ground clutter. Stress and pressure are nothing but ground clutter.

The real target for me is addiction. I don’t want to focus on the real target because I don’t want to be an addict. I don’t want to admit that there is a substance that I am slave to. If I can worry about the ground clutter, I don’t have to worry about dealing with the real issue.

I don’t know what brought that particular field trip into my head. The mind works in mysterious ways.

Keep the quit

PT

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