The following pieces of advice come straight from addiction counselors. If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction, knowing these would help:
1. Stop lying to yourself
It is likely that when people who wish you well ask you about your addiction, you lie to them. Even though that might affect your relationship with them negatively, that isn’t even the half of it. When you are feeding an addiction, you will also be lying to yourself! If you want to start down the path to recovery, then the first thing you need is to be honest about with yourself. Once you have that part down, you will be able to share your reality with others as well. Don’t waste your energy blocking the door to healing. Instead use that energy to throw it open and look what is inside.
2. You will remain the same
Often we are told that as soon as an individual kicks their habit, they transform into someone new. Don’t waste your time believing that. Addiction counseling can help you get over your addiction but when recovery is successful, you won’t be transformed into someone you aren’t. Instead, a healthier version of you will come out. But it will be the same person you used to be pre-addiction. However, you will be much happier than you have been in some time.
3. Building a therapeutic alliance takes time and work
Do not share everything you have to say the moment you step into the addiction counselor’s office. Take your lead from them and slowly work on all the contributing issues one by one. Work with the counselor to build a strong and safe relationship. While that might take more time, it will get you better results.
4. You can only get better for you
If you want to get better, then you have to want it for yourself. Even though you might be doing to make life better for your family or friends, it is not going to work. When you choose that as a reason, you are actually looking for a quick fix. It won’t last long and neither would the motivation for recovery.
5. Abstinence isn’t the only thing that matters
If your eyes remain on abstinence, then you might be setting up yourself to fail! Don’t think about major improvements but try to take things one day at a time. Your goal should be to focus on taking smaller steps. In this case, short-term thinking will help you not hamper you. It is better to work with the counselor to dig deeper and find the underlying cause for your addiction. When you discover that, progress will be certain. Don’t look for quick fixes; look for long lasting recovery.
So, to conclude:
- You need to accept reality
- Stop expecting a transformation
- Work at forming a bond with your addiction counselor
- Do it for yourself
- Think short-term
Do all that and you will have a much better chance of recovery. Get in touch with an addiction counselor today!