Breaking Through Addiction: The Other Side
Much focus is put on the difficulties and trials of seeking help for addiction. While this is definitely true, it is also essential to focus on what life is like after one has gone through rehabilitation and has reintegrated into the daily life of the “normal society.” There will be a significant change when a person begins his or her treatment. Still, another major change will occur when coming out of treatment.
Addiction is difficult to truly overcome, and a person may very well be continuing to deal with the triggers of the addiction for years to come. Nevertheless, the trials are all paying off to a larger purpose. There are many mentions of a happy, healthy, sober life after one has addressed their addiction, but what does that really mean? What is the end result of a person recovering and reestablishing themselves in society, and what changes will there be on the other side of addiction recovery?
Voice and Agency
When going through recovery, it is essential to set a list of goals for a person. While this is evident in models such as the 12-step program, there are also typically goals that, personally, an individual wants to accomplish. The skills within the recovery program are necessary here, even beyond the confines of the addiction recovery itself, and give way to an ongoing self-actualization path. They prioritize a sense of voice and a myriad of mechanisms that are to be implemented beyond recovery itself.
This is the first change – a sense of voice and agency. Voice and agency are defined not just as physically able to speak, but instead as outgoing and precise. We must be able to accurately identify what we want out of any situation or out of life. One cannot achieve recovery without their own internal acumen to accomplish such a goal. Voice will allow a person to take those goals and adequately express how they want their lives to go.
An addict spends a lot of time in guilt, always thinking back onto the mistakes made and dwelling on them. This ability to look back becomes a tool for inspiration in the next stage of addiction recovery and ongoing sobriety. Looking back is not inherently a bad thing. Instead, it is the ability to take those memories and experiences for what they are and reveal a positive meaning from them.
Only once the toxins of the addiction are free from the body can one begin to realize the impact their actions have had on other people. Then, we can put into perspective how far-reaching our addiction was. This is not a time to look back with guilt, however, but to look back with a sense of pride in what was overcome. Each of those triggers and mistakes becomes a way to gauge the impact of our addiction. Finally, we can bring a sense of understanding for the people suffering from the same thing.
Looking back with a new lens creates a real appreciation for the present. There will be unique desires, new people, and new experiences in the newfound sober world. It will come with a new passion, career, and personal goals as the innate need to use becomes replaced with a new driving purpose!
Making One’s Own Decision
Being happy is something that a person has to define for themselves, depending on their own goals. However, that is a significant personal change that one can expect on the other side of recovery. One can define it for themselves, rather than the idea of happiness being tied to the use of a particular substance.
The sense of agency, voice, and perspective all lead to this one crucial question – what makes me happy? Happiness becomes redefined, and guilt and pain are worked through. “Happy and healthy” is no longer just a catchy phrase, it is a new motto for a life worth living.
There will be even more significant changes as one moves back into society after rehabilitation. There will be a community there to help with each step towards self-actualization. While there may be fears of stigma and some residual guilt, they are all issues that can be dealt with using the strategies that one has internalized at this point.
Voice, agency, perspective, and the decision toward happiness become influential factors. We will have developed the voice to stand up for ourselves and acknowledge our past. We have discovered the agency to take hold of life moving forward, and the perspective to make sense of the new world. The things that are important to us now in our sober life have become apparent, which will make one happy. No part will be easy, but there will be a new life on the other side of addiction.
Brighton Recovery Center is available to help any individuals ready to take that first step in the journey towards a sober life. Their large campus is used to create a sense of normalcy and community while going through the recovery process. It comes with an air of acceptance free from judgment and stigma. For those wanting more information, contact Brighton today at 1-844-479-7035. It’s your life, your treatment, and your recovery.