Change, it’s the main ingredient for going from a life of substance abuse to a life of recovery. The process of recovery has more to do with change than it does with will power. The readiness for change is a personal destination, some are there, some are on their way there, and some are not even close to being there yet.
No matter where we are on the journey from substance use to recovery, people do have the power to change. Every day offers a new day for a change and with that, a new life of possibilities. Change is one part of life a person can affect, and that change starts with action.
Constant chaos in one’s life is often what brings many to understand that something is amiss – something needs to change. In the 12-step rooms, you’ll often hear someone say they knew it was time for a change because their life had become unmanageable. Often that can bring a search for help in finding a better life, a life of recovery instead of substance abuse. A life of recovery requires a strong commitment and with it come many rewards. To experience long-lasting transformation, a person beginning recovery needs to be ready to change physically, mentally, and emotionally. Essentially, everything about the way that person was living their life. What might that look like?
- Before recovery were your housekeeping habits horrid? Maybe it’s time to commit to a habit of cleaning and removing clutter from one’s life.
- Before recovery was the relationships you had causing you pain, grief, and shame? Maybe it’s time to commit to detaching from those toxic relationships and improving others with some reflection on what part you may have played in creating discord with loved ones.
- Before recovery was your daily lifestyle one of running on empty, not taking care of yourself, and over-committing or saying “yes” when you wanted to say “no” to avoid conflict? Maybe it’s time to commit to more self-care and learning how to say “no” if it’s not in your best interest. For most people struggling with addiction issues, it’s those patterns, habits, behaviors, and lifestyle that lead to a life of substance abuse.
The journey from addictive substance use to recovery is complex and needs more than just the power of will, it must come by surrendering to real change.
Below are five ways you can affect change in your life
- First and foremost is the decision to change. Deciding to change your substance abuse behavior is the biggest and most important change. Remember all the reasons why you want to make this change; you want better relationships, you want a steady job that you enjoy, you want to eliminate the behaviors (like lying and stealing) that came with your addiction. Most of all you want a life that is happy, joyous and free. Today, it’s time to change. It requires more than simply quitting your substance abuse. It requires eliminating the patterns, habits, behaviors, and lifestyle that lead you to using. That is how you find your new life.
- How do you start making changes? Start small. Take some time to give some thought to what you really want in your life. Sit down with pen and paper and ask yourself what are your dreams, your aspirations, and your goals? Get clear on the things that are important to you: career, finances, family, education, art, health, and spirituality. Writing down your goals helps you get closer to those actions that will turn your goals into reality helping you find that life of joy and serenity that addiction stole away.
- Look at the things that aren’t working in your life and start there. For example, if you feel like there is not enough time in the day to get done what you want to, make a commitment to wake up earlier so you can make better use of your time. If you feel like the people you surround yourself with don’t hold you accountable to be your best self, change your social circle and find those who do support you as the best version of yourself. Even small changes today will carry you into a better tomorrow.
- Look at the way you take care of your physical self. Is it time for that to change? Feeling good and looking good can be a powerful motivator for staying with your commitment to change. Join a gym, a sports team or a meetup group that you like where you can become more socially active in your community. That will help you avoid the isolation you fell into while using chemicals. Hanging out in a social circle with others who are committed to good health is contagious. As your lifestyle becomes healthier, you will feel better and naturally look better. You’ll be amazed at the benefits your new lifestyle change can bring.
- Guard your recovery with your life. Because, as we know, it is your life. So be intentional with who you share your time. It’s not a good idea to keep those old running buddies who encouraged you in your path to using. Now is the time to change your social circle. Deciding to act and change your network of friends is one of the best changes you can make in support of your sobriety. Find people who share your interests through a church group, a meetup group or maybe sign up for a new class at the local university.
- You have already decided to change the direction of your life. You chose to walk toward sobriety and leave the world of substance abuse behind. In your new life of recovery, you can go back to school, start a new career or travel. The world is your oyster! Maybe you even decide to focus on repairing relationships with yourself and your family. Hopefully, that has already begun in choosing this journey of recovery.
Now is the time for a change. It’s the small incremental actions of change that bring a life that you own – not a life of substance abuse that owns you. Change isn’t easy, but Healing Springs Ranch can help. Our programs provide the services and care that you need to make change happen and your recovery a reality. Our experienced staff will work with you every step of your recovery journey to implement an individualized plan that will fit your unique and specific needs.
Call Healing Springs Ranch to start the journey of change in your life.