I wish I could say that the road to recovery was much easier and quicker than it truly is. Were I to say that, I would be lying not only to you, but also myself, addiction doesn’t happen overnight and neither do its solutions. If you are addicted, you already know this.
What I desire to do today is encourage us.
Whether we are well along our recovery path, or just joining the fight, we can quickly become overwhelmed at the work that is before us.
When we lose our way and relapse into our “drug” we can become depressed and hopeless without any effort at all.
We feel that we have fallen right back to the very beginning. All the work we’ve done, the meetings we’ve attended, relationships that have been built, sobriety we have accomplished; all for nothing.
I want to stop us right there; it hasn’t been for nothing, and we are not right back where we started.
When we struggle through the night, our minds being assaulted by thoughts and images that seek to plunge us back into the mire we are struggling to escape, what gives us hope? For me, it isn’t whether or not I am bombarded, it is what I do with it. As someone recovering from an addiction to pornography, it is victory for me when I am able to refuse the desires of acting out that lead right back to bondage.
For that reason I am not so worried about the errant thought that slips in, that isn’t avoidable-but what do I do with that thought once it is presented to me? Our minds are very important, we cannot allow ourselves to dwell upon the things we know draw us back to the trough of shame and guilt. It is when a temptation has invariably led to us acting out that we must change our behavior. In those moments lets say, “Today, I take a stand and say no, not this time!”
It is taking steps in a positive and healthy direction that leads to our recovery.
Some are proponents of cold turkey sobriety, meaning of course, we just stop doing that addictive thing. Others believe it is a process and each time we are confronted with temptation we endeavor to do a little better. I guess I am a believer in whatever works for each of us is what we should do. Certainly there are practices that have proven to be powerful allies to recovery, personal therapy and 12-step groups among them. However, it is important to find what works for you, stick with it and never give up!
Today, whatever you face, you are not alone. If you are in a period of great struggle, make it a day in which you gain some small victory. Pace yourself. If you are feeling strong and sailing along, make a larger resolution that reflects your successes and still stretches you. The point is, find a positive in the midst of all the challenges, and give yourself a break from having to be perfect, no one is
You have chosen to pursue recovery and healing, you are a brave and courageous person already, now, fight on!
Have a blessed day!