Recovery isn’t a solitary venture. It’s a group effort shared by everyone with a stake in your recovery. It’s a group effort that you have to lead because you are the person with the most at stake. Here are some ways you can be a more effective leader in your own recovery efforts. Ask for help. You are ultimately responsible for your own recovery, but no one expects you to do it alone. Asking for help is difficult. It can make you feel vulnerable. It can feel like putting a burden on people you care about, but remember that the people who care about you want you to be healthy and happy. Listen. We generally think we know ourselves well and we know what’s best for ourselves. In some situations that is true, but in others, especially if addiction is involved, we have massive blind spots. When people close to you express their concern, don’t shrug it off. They might see patterns you can’t. Getting different perspectives on your behavior allows to to better deal with challenges. Plan. Every day is a new day, it’s true, but if you don’t start the day with a plan, you risk falling back into old patterns. You need to figure out where things go wrong and know in advance how to deal with them. That might mean making a schedule and sticking to it, or it might be something as simple a contingency plan. For example, if a friend calls and asks if you want to get a drink, suggest coffee instead. Set a good example. A good leader realizes that the people around her look to her as an example. You may assume that no one looks at you for an example, but you might be surprised. How might your behavior change if you knew someone–a child, a coworker, a friend–thought you were someone worth emulating? When you realize your behavior is about more than your own happiness, you have added incentive to be the best you can be. Set goals. AA is well known for this aspect of recovery, giving chips to mark days, months, or years of sobriety. This is a perfect way to start. Later on, it might be helpful to set other goals, such as getting work that might not have been possible before recovery. Never stop learning. We are still in the early stages of understanding mental health and addiction and we learn more every year. That means there are constantly new things to learn. When you understand more about addiction you can play a more active role in your own recovery.
You have the ability to lead the life of your dreams when you leave addiction behind. It’s time to change your story from addiction to recovery. Change your story, change your life. Oceanfront Recovery is a men’s & women’s addiction treatment center in Laguna Beach, California. Call us today for information on our programs: 877.279.1777