Breaking the Vicious Cycle of Addiction
Drugs and alcohol deliver nothing but heartbreak and broken promises. During active addiction, substances become your higher power, guiding force, and reason for living. Whether you use drugs and alcohol to cope with the stresses of everyday living or to unwind after a long day, you expect substances to fill a void in your life. When casual experimentation and use turns into abuse and addiction, substances become your guiding force. Once you find the tools and support you need to break the vicious cycle of addiction, you will start to feel great and look great. However, you may notice yourself doubting the promises of sobriety in this journey. As you grow, you will begin to reap the rewards of living a lifestyle in recovery. You may not notice these changes immediately, but they will become natural to you with each passing day.
While you will experience periods where you feel like you are on shaky ground, remembering all the things that sobriety promises you will help you navigate those turbulent waters.
Perhaps the biggest people indulge in drugs and alcohol use is to relieve the stresses that life throws at them. It isn’t an uncommon occurrence to hear someone say they need to use to relieve the pressures of the day. But, substances only relieve stress in the short term – unfortunately that high is only short-lived and doesn’t do anything to address the actual problem. Once those causes are recognized and understood, you can find healthy methods for coping with these situations in your life. Sobriety in recovery promises you will uncover the underlying causes of your stress. For many, their use becomes a security blanket in social situations. They depend on drugs and alcohol to make an event fun and helps them be the life of the party by lowering their inhibitions. In recovery, you can learn that you can stay sober and actually have fun – no matter what the situation. When you gain confidence in your recovery, you become more comfortable in your skin. Ultimately, you become more and more able to share your real self with friends, acquaintances, and loved ones. Being sober allows you to truly show people who you are without the mask. At that point you will begin to accept all of your personality traits – both good and bad.
In your recovery, you understand that the use of drugs was merely a symptom of a deeper issue. More often than not, those issues revolve around physical and/or psychological pain. Much like stress, substances provide temporary relief from pain, but they will never “cure” what you experience deep inside. When you quit drugs and alcohol once and for all, you can come to terms with you pain. Sobriety in recovery promises you will be able to put an end to harming yourself and those that you love the most
Anything that we do in life has a singular purpose, and that is to make us happy. We as human beings are hardwired to feel pleasure and happiness. Substances can only provide temporary pleasure to us – and it comes at a price because once it wears off, you feel isolated, empty, and alone. Once you start the process of recovery, it takes time to gain control of what you feel. Eventually, you will come to understand that true happiness in sobriety is getting to know the real you. Whether you are in early recovery or have substantial clean time, you will no doubt face hard times in your recovery. The stresses of everyday life can wear you down and leave you vulnerable to the temptations of substances. Have confidence in yourself. As you stay in recovery longer, you will gradually build this trust in yourself.
In those dark times, you must remember the things that sobriety promises you in recovery and employ the life skills and support you need to break free from those thoughts.