Courage To Change
One of the most challenging aspects of recovery is having the courage to change. Recovery doesn’t just mean recovering from the drug or alcohol or whatever the addiction was. It also means recovering from all areas of your life that may have been damaged because of the addiction or before the addiction started. Oftentimes someone gets into drugs, alcohol or other addictions as a ‘solution’ to a problem or a way to manage something that is painful and difficult. The drug, alcohol or substance use is usually not seen as a problem. It’s usually seen as something positive that is improving someone’s life. But the issue with this is that it’s not addressing the underlying root reasons for why someone started the addiction in the first place.
Were you struggling with anxiety? Depression and sadness? Trauma? Out of control thoughts that kept spinning and spinning? What is it that made you decide to start the thing you’re addicted to? Did you want to escape and feel like you were in another world or maybe you were just feeling bored and wanted more excitement in your life?
Whatever the reasons are, they are important because they help address and understand what is happening with the addiction. What pulled you to it? What keeps you engaged and participating in it? It’s these issues underneath the addiction that are just as important as recovery. Essentially asking yourself, ‘what are you medicating with this addiction?’
Confronting the issues underneath the addiction is not necessarily easy. To really look at it and be honest with yourself is powerful for change. However, change itself takes courage. We are wired to go to what is familiar and to stick to with what we know. The way our brains function is that it’s ‘safer’ to stay with something that is familiar even if it’s harming us than to make a change. Addressing what motivates your addiction can mean change. Any change, whether it’s positive or negative can seem scary or daunting. That is why courage is said to be not the absence of fear, but being afraid and going forward anyways.
Some ways you can be more courageous in your everyday life and that will help you make changes include:
- Being mindful and practicing mindfulness and insight in everyday living
- Being mindful of what is motivating the addiction
- Concentrating on the bigger reason you’re working towards change and the bigger goals you’re hoping to achieve for yourself and others
- Connect with others that are also working to make changes and are on a similar path as you
- Find quietly courageous people and role models
- Notice when you’re feeling scared of something new or of change but keep going forward in spite of those fears so you can work towards a better life for yourself
Overall, one of the biggest ways to have more courage is to face your fears head on. Just because you’re feeling afraid doesn’t mean you need to stop the work you’re doing. Keep going forward, day by day and moment by moment, and eventually you’ll get where you want to go.
At Silver Lining Recovery, we will provide you with a holistic treatment program tailored to your unique needs. Our team of dedicated mental health professionals will walk with you as you take the first steps in recovery. We want you to feel confident in yourself and your sobriety inside the facility and, after completion of the program, in your social and professional spheres. If you’re interested in joining our recovery community, please call us today at (866) 448-4563 for a consultation.