5 Things I Wish I’d Been Told in Early Sobriety
I may have thought of sobriety in a different, more positive light at the beginning. Here are just a few things I wish I had been told.
Every year, we create New Year’s resolutions to help us improve ourselves and our lives. Every year, we fully hope and intend to follow through with them. Most years, we don’t. Sometimes, we start off strong, only to sputter after a few weeks. If you are struggling with drug or alcohol addiction issues, this is the year to keep your New Year’s resolution to get sober and actually make a meaningful change in your life.
You’ve seen what your addiction has done to your life. You’ve watched as you slowly hurt everyone who loves you more and more, until bridges are completely burnt. You’ve watched as your career has suffered one day at a time, leaving you in a far different place than you had imagined or intended. You’ve watched financial and legal problems pop up, making it harder and harder for you to live your life the way you want and support the people who depend on you.
Luckily, all of that can stop. You may need help overcoming your substance abuse issues, but that’s not unexpected. If it was easy to stop using drugs and alcohol, the concept of an addiction wouldn’t even exist. Millions of Americans live with drug and alcohol addiction problems every day. The vast majority will never seek help. You can. You have it in your power to take the first steps towards sobriety.
Sobriety is a lifelong process, and that is a very difficult concept for those who are first starting out on a life free of substance abuse. The first few days, weeks, and months, are the hardest for most in recovery. There are so many changes in your life, from the people you socialize with to your daily routine. The cravings that you experience can be incredibly intense. Withdrawal can be an intensely painful and frightening process, and it can even be deadly if unsupervised in some circumstances.
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When you have a bad experience, especially one that can be as severe as withdrawal, you are often unwilling or unable to continue, and you are typically much less willing to try again. This is one of many reasons that so many addicts and alcoholics are discouraged from their solo attempts at recovery. However, when you have professional help, the process is significantly different and more positive.
Treatment experts know how to guide you through one of the most difficult challenges you will ever face. They can provide you with the medical, emotional, and psychiatric support that you need to get through the worst of withdrawal so that you start your journey to sobriety off right. Just as importantly, they will help guide you through the first days of sobriety, when it is most vulnerable and susceptible to relapse.
The truth is that a lot goes into staying sober. Most individuals develop substance abuse issues for a reason, and unless those underlying causes are addressed, it will prove extremely challenging to continue the recovery process successfully. Drug and alcohol rehab facilities provide the counseling that helps you get to the bottom of why you use and help you address your problems in a way that minimizes the likelihood of relapse. These facilities also provide you with numerous tools to use in your daily life that help you become happier, healthier, more successful, and sober.
You have a choice. This year can be the same as last year and the year before that. This year, you can stay the same. However, you can make this year different. This can be the year that you keep your New Year’s resolution to get sober. This can be the year you get help. This can be the year you’re in a much better place in December than in January. This can be the year that you set yourself up for success going forward. This is the year you can break free. This is the year you can start becoming the person you know you are inside. This is the year you can take your life back.
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