Accepting Change and Embracing Challenges in Recovery
Part of managing the ups and downs of life in recovery is choosing positive responses to the challenges that life throws at you. Emotions like anger and self-pity are natural, but you should have the self awareness to recognize when you are thinking negative thoughts and try to steer your attitude into a more positive direction.
Above all, accepting and adapting to change are skills that the recovering person will benefit greatly from. Accepting that much of what happens in life is out of your control and learning to let go of expectations are good habits that will help you achieve a level of serenity that will carry you through even the most disappointing circumstances without using drugs or alcohol.
Having an Addiction Support Team is Invaluable
Sometimes when we get caught up in the challenges that life throws at us we actually internalize and blame ourselves for things that are happening outside of our realm of control. Our job in recovery is to manage how we react to life’s challenges, not to eradicate them. This is where having a counselor, sponsor, or a circle of friends in recovery is so valuable to provide perspective and advice. People who aren’t experiencing what you are will have the wherewithal to point out that you are beating yourself up needlessly, or help steer your focus back to all that you have to be grateful for.
Challenges are Often Blessings in Disguise
Countless successfully recovering people have been known to say that they are grateful for the hard stuff in life that knocked them off balance emotionally. As they have worked through the challenges, they have often built new skills that carry them to new heights in life. Some people even express gratitude for the fighting through the disease of addiction, as it allowed them to live a grateful life better than they ever imagined possible in recovery.
Remember that “This Too Shall Pass”
Have you ever thought back to a problem that completely overwhelmed you in the past but in retrospect seems like ‘no big deal?’ Perhaps you were horribly worried about an outcome that never came to pass. Remind yourself during your future trials and tribulations that your problems are always magnified in the moment, and remember that “this too shall pass,” a phrase that many people report provides them great relief during tough times.
Let Go of Control
There are things we can control and there are things that are out of are control. If you’re having a hard time accepting change, it could be a control issue. Even in sobriety, life can feel very chaotic, scary, and sad. It’s certainly not going to help things if you are trying to control things that are outside of your circle of influence.
The “Serenity Prayer” states:
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; the courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference.
This prayer is one that many people report helps them ‘let go’ of what they can’t control.
Contact NorthStar Transitions for Support in Recovery
NorthStar Transitions is a cutting edge treatment center and addiction support system for the first year of recovery. We help newly sober individuals really thrive in recovery. Call us at (303) 558-6400 if you or someone you know is in need of help for a substance addiction.