It is a scientific fact that in addiction, the brain simply cannot exercise patience. It is one of the main reasons you have such intense cravings, and such horrible withdrawals if you do not get the fix you so desperately want. In recovery, it is important to take the time to focus on patience, as it will be required often as you navigate any potentially rough times ahead. Researchers indicate that the best way to practice patience is simply to train yourself with small tasks that will warm you up for bigger things later on. Practice waiting for a bit before turning on the TV or responding to a text. Consider taking a break from your favorite food and enjoying something else instead, before coming back to your food later. Pick up a hobby that takes patience to learn. The brain must essentially be rewired into believing that having patience yields bigger rewards than impulsion and immediacy does. This certainly should not be incredibly hard to do, as studies indicate that this is actually the case. The famous quote: “Good things come to those who wait” certainly did not come out of thin air. One of the easiest ways to remind yourself of the value of patience is by making a list of the immediate things you’ve done and their results, and then comparing them to the times in which you’ve waited. It will be clear to see that being patient almost always yields the biggest and best rewards. As you recover, you will undoubtedly become discouraged if you do not feel that you are progressing at the pace you may want to progress. Patience in this stage is key. You must remember that one of the most important aspects of patience is understanding: understanding that everything will not happen exactly when you expect it to, and understanding that is indeed okay. Research shows that patience in recovery and sobriety can actually be broken down into two additional components as well. Patience can mean having the faith that things will work out the way they should, in due time. This, obviously, is one of the harder concepts to grasp, because it goes completely against our need to control. Or so it seems. Faith that things will work out means you are completely confident in the decisions you have already made, and shows that you have enough control to trust that those decisions were the right ones. Patience also means considering how others may feel at any given moment. It may be easy enough for us to empathize with ourselves, but putting ourselves in another’s shoes gives us perspective, and allows us to monitor our actions accordingly.
One thing you shouldn’t be patient with is getting help for your addiction. If you or a loved one is suffering from addiction, call Oceanfront Recovery at (877)279-1777, and get the help you deserve!