Recovery is more than a series of steps you take to change your life. It’s a state of mind that entails approaching every aspect of your life with awareness and intention. Keeping your long-term goals in mind no matter how many obstacles you face can allow you to see yourself and your progress from a big-picture perspective.
Instead of determining your worth by measuring yourself according to specific standards, remember that your mission is to become the best possible version of yourself in the long term, despite the inevitable ups and downs that are sure to appear as part of your life. Thinking this way can improve your entire outlook on life and lead to growth across the board.
At its core, recovery is self-transformation. This looks different for every person who decides it’s time to make a change, and it should–recovery isn’t about hitting an arbitrary milestone or achieving a specific goal. It’s about becoming better than the version of yourself that you were before by overcoming your obstacles and fulfilling your potential as a human being.
Whether you’re working to rise above addiction, mental illness, co-occurring disorders, or any other form of personal struggle, you can achieve growth and success by viewing your recovery as a mental shift in who you are rather than a series of checkmarks or standards. While it can certainly help to establish boundaries and expectations for yourself, such as staying sober, picking up new hobbies, or forming new relationships, the most powerful driving force behind your mission of self-improvement is the internal commitment to becoming a better person.
At the same time, the fact that recovery requires a shift in mindset is one of the things that make it exceptionally challenging. One of the most tried and true ways to achieve the recovery state of mind is to reach out for help. Treatment and healing centers around the world, across every method and approach, place a heavy emphasis on the social aspect of recovery because its benefits can’t be replicated by any other means.
Your trusted friends and family members who know you best can offer input based on the changes they’ve seen you go through. In some ways, they may be able to provide guidance and perspective in ways that you can’t see yourself. Remember the adage, “If you continue to think as you’ve always thought, you’ll continue to get what you’ve always got.” Letting other people guide your recovery is a worthwhile way to make new changes.
This is especially true when it comes to relationships that you form throughout your healing process. Your treatment professionals, sponsors, and peers in sobriety offer the unique advantage of providing you with the encouragement and accountability that they know is necessary to your success. Because who you are is more fundamental to your recovery than any specific steps you choose to take, surrounding yourself with people who bring out a positive, proactive side of you is key to moving forward.
Thinking about your recovery as an ongoing process can make it easier to bounce back from backslides or low periods. Every single person in recovery goes through ups and downs, and many struggle with relapse in some form. Although you may be delayed or obstructed from reaching your goals, it’s critical to remember that those goals do not disappear or become unreachable, no matter how bad things get.
If you experience relapse, don’t think of yourself as a failure. If you have days of doubt or hopelessness, don’t think of yourself as incapable. If you have days when you wish you could give it all up and just go back to the way you used to be, don’t think of yourself as a lost cause. Every day that you take even a single step forward is a day of success in your recovery because a single step forward is all it takes to be better than you were the day before.
Recovery goes beyond changing your relationship with substances; it can entail any aspect of self-improvement that brings you closer to the person you want to become. Depending on your circumstances and ideals, you might benefit from adopting healthier habits like exercise, consistent social interaction, meditation, a change in career, moving to a new location, pursuing your passions, adopting an animal, forgiving old grudges–the list goes on. Working with a counselor can prove invaluable in helping you assess your life and recognize all areas of improvement.
Part of the challenge in beating substance abuse is that you’re fighting against your own mind. No matter how many times you try to break away or cut yourself off, you might keep coming back. To fully solve your problems, you must address them at the root. This can be an intensely difficult undertaking on your own. Remember that you don’t have to do this alone. If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction or mental illness, it’s time to dig deep and accept that effective healing requires change. We can help you make that change at Cornerstone Healing Center. Our home-away-from-home treatment center in Scottsdale, Arizona, is designed to facilitate growth and recovery on a personal level. Our expert staff uses a dynamic array of evidence-based treatment methods to help you overcome addiction physically, mentally, and emotionally. Learn to make a lasting transformation and rebuild the life you deserve. Call (800) 643-2108 to learn more.