Patience can mean the difference between recovery and continued addiction. When we are patient, we are able to stay honest, open-minded, and willing to go through the process of recovery. Without patience, we may be less likely to reach a point where we are able to develop all the tools necessary to overcome addiction. Patience, or the lack thereof, may be a precursor to addiction. According to Dr. Shahram Heshmat in a 2018 Psychology Today article entitled One Trait the Predicts Addiction, “Adolescents who lack patience are more likely to experiment with and use drugs. Impulsive individuals typically choose the smaller, faster reward more often than the larger, delayed reward. This is because of its distance in time relative to the immediacy of the smaller reward. Overcoming this tendency is an important prevention tool, such as learning to tolerate delay or an ability to wait to get what you want.” Impatience can lead to a dependence on immediate reward, such as the immediate feeling of intoxication from drugs and alcohol. Patience is more than just holding ourselves back from an immediate reward. Dr. Neel Burton, in a 2015 Psychology Today article entitled Why Patience is Power, explains, “Exercising patience (note the use of the verb ‘to exercise’) can be compared to dieting or growing a garden. Yes, waiting is involved, but one also needs to have a plan in place, and, moreover, to work at that plan. Thus, when it comes to others, patience does not amount to mere restraint or toleration, but to a complicit engagement in their struggle and welfare. In that much, patience is a form of compassion, which, rather than disregarding and alienating people, turns them into friends and allies.” Our patience, in combination with living by a program of recovery, can be what propels us into a greater life in sobriety. Learning to exercise patience can be a wonderful and effective tool in our recovery. Rather than continually relying on the immediate effects of substances, we can learn to wait for the gifts of sobriety to come to us. The longer we stay sober, the more we will be rewarded with happiness, joyousness, and freedom in our recovery.
Your story can become one of peace and serenity. You can make the decision to seek help now and begin building a brighter future in sobriety. Oceanfront Recovery, a men’s treatment center in the heart of beautiful Laguna Beach, is staffed with caring and compassionate professionals dedicated to helping clients develop all the tools necessary to achieve and maintain sobriety. For information about individualized treatment options, please call: (877) 279-1777