The Role of Resilience in Addiction Recovery

Recovery will come with many ups and downs throughout your journey. Even if you have been sober for many years, you will still find yourself having bad days where you struggle with staying clean. This is where the importance of resilience comes in. On the days that you don’t feel like trying again, you have to get back up and try again. Being resilient can take some time and is a skill to learn, but it will play a crucial role in helping you maintain your sobriety over the coming years. Learning about resilience and its role in addiction recovery can help you develop the skills to master it.

Defining Resilience

Merriam-Webster defines resilience as “an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change.” Having resilience means overcoming certain life events that may be overwhelmingly damaging, such as trauma, stress, adversity, relationship troubles, health problems, and more. People that are resilient can maintain control of their life even when going through difficult times. This helps them become motivated to grow and take the circumstances into their own hands to create a better life even in the face of pain.

Don’t Be Confused

While resilience can seem like a superhuman power where you don’t face pain or difficult times, this is untrue. The critical thing to understand about resilience is that there will be times when you are knocked down. You will experience pain in your life, but resilience will help you be better prepared to cope with that pain. Anyone can strengthen their resilience through specific actions, behaviors, and thoughts over time. 

Resilience and Recovery

Recovery can often leave you feeling vulnerable, especially on the hard days. Even though you know coping mechanisms to help you get through periods of difficulty, there will be times you get knocked down on your feet and won’t know how to get back up. This is where resiliency comes in. Even when you feel that there is no way to continue moving forward, you must push through. If you lack resilience, you are more likely to relapse when you stumble. Instead of focusing on the bad and allowing yourself to wallow in your struggles, resiliency will motivate you to find ways to get back up. Knowing how to strengthen your resilience will help you overcome even the most difficult struggles that you experience.

How to Strengthen Your Resilience

When you find yourself at a low point in your recovery, try methods to develop and strengthen your resiliency. This way, you are more prepared to avoid relapse and continue maintaining your recovery. Here are some ways to improve your resilience:

Accept Change

Life is not linear, and neither is healing. You cannot expect to live in a comfortable bubble for your entire recovery journey. Changes will come, some that are good and some that are not so good. Remember that change is a natural part of life and surrender to this fact. Accepting these changes and still having a hold on your life will help greatly as you continue working on your recovery.

Practice Self-Care

When you get knocked down, it is sometimes best to slow down and take care of yourself while working on getting back up. Self-care can help you make it through a difficult time as you learn to take care of your own needs, even in the face of stress and adversity. Ensure you are eating right, exercising, getting enough sleep, and doing things that will keep you afloat during this time.

Change Your Perspective

Rather than focusing on how challenging times negatively affect your life try seeing them as new opportunities to learn, grow, and improve. When you mess up, it is a great chance to learn from your mistakes and do better next time. This way, you can avoid making the same mistake twice and continue moving forward.

Connect With Other Sober Individuals

When you have been in recovery for an extended time, it can be easy to get into a routine and find yourself isolated from your recovery community. This can be challenging when you are struggling, as those that haven’t been through addiction or recovery cannot empathize with you. They can’t understand what you have gone through and offer practical advice to get you through these difficult times. Connecting with sober individuals and expanding your sober support network can help you get back on your feet in times of trouble from the help of others that have been where you are.

Recovery is not a straight line to healing. It is full of twists and turns, mountains and valleys, and times of uncertainty. You cannot expect to ignore your problems until they go away or wallow in them and think this will help you get better. Instead of getting knocked down and staying there, learn to practice resiliency in your recovery. This means accepting the difficult periods but still getting back up and learning from them to keep progressing in your healing journey. Everyone can practice resiliency; you just need to put in the work to be successful over time. This way, you can avoid relapse and maintain sobriety for the long term. At Northstar Transitions, we want you to be successful in your recovery. If you find yourself struggling and need extra support, reach out to our facility. Our expertly trained staff can give you the proper encouragement and support you need. Call us today at (303) 558-6400.

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