Self Forgiveness in Addiction Recovery
Find out how self forgiveness in addiction recovery can help you in the journey to recovery
Self forgiveness in addiction recovery is one of the many things that an addict has to face in order to get well. Because strong emotions may be connected to unhealthy, destructive thoughts that can lead to using drugs or alcohol, it is important for a recovering addict to deal with the subject of forgiving others and him self. Forgiveness can be a difficult thing to accomplish and may require a lot of time and understanding. But to truly be healed you must let go of anger, resentment, blame, guilt, shame and bitterness of others and yourself.
Once you allow forgiveness to enter your life, you will be free from all the damaging emotions that are associated with it. As an addict, there may have been things that you did that you are now ashamed of. You may be so angry at yourself for allowing bad things to happen like: cheating on your spouse or destroying your marriage, stealing money from family and friends, losing a good job or messing-up your education goals. You may have participated in criminal activity and was incarcerated. Yes, you may have done a lot of irresponsible things that brought more trouble into your life, but now you have a second chance to make things right and begin a new life again. This will require that you learn how to forgive yourself by setting these goals and attaining them:
1. Self forgiveness in addiction recovery
Self-forgiveness in addiction recovery is about letting go of past mistakes and not continuously dwelling on them. Bad choices from the past should not affect how we chose to live our life now or in the future. Understanding where and how we failed in the past will keep us from repeating those mistakes again. It allows us to be free and begin to make the right kind of choices for our self.
2. What to Expect in Recovery from Addiction
What you can expect in recovery from addiction is to begin the process of discovery to explore and identify your core values, morals and beliefs. Many of them may not be based on facts, but were just attitudes that we learned from others who were not so enlightened themselves. Once we identify dysfunctional thinking and behavior, we will be free to change it for the better.
3. Cut yourself some slack and treat yourself with compassion
You are on a voyage of self-discovery and you have to acknowledge that you made some mistakes, but that doesn’t mean you have to keep punishing yourself for them for the rest of your life. Every time you discover another dysfunctional thought pattern, you are given the opportunity to forgive it and let it go. We have all been conditioned to think in certain ways that are not always healthy, and now is the time to undo damaging thoughts and behaviors and let them go.
4. Sometimes it is hard to forgive our self because of our pride, shame and anger
These negative emotions may emerge whenever we remember our past mistakes and may cloud our thinking, and instead of forgiving our self we condemn our self all over again. We have to separate the emotion from the mistake to be able to see it for what it is – a mistake that is worthy of forgiveness. We didn’t have the knowledge, wisdom and tools to make the right choices at the time. And although addiction should not be used as an excuse, it does affect an addict’s behavior in negative ways.
5. Sharing your feelings with others
Sharing your feelings with others often helps ease the pain of past mistakes and gives you the opportunity to finally forgive your self. The more you learn to remove the inner negative dialog you have with yourself, the quicker you will be able to replace it with uplifting, happy healthy thoughts.
Psychological counseling and behavioral therapy will give you the opportunity to explore your options and make the changes that are necessary to achieve self forgiveness in addiction recovery. You will learn to forgive yourself and begin to heal in body, mind, emotions and spirit. This is what to expect in recovery from addiction, and what you should look for when selecting the right rehab center for you. Self-forgiveness in addiction recovery is a key to being free from the past and beginning to live a bright, productive and healthy life.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the White Sands Treatment Center at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.