“Relapse is a part of recovery”- it’s a dangerous statement to make. Many people assume that relapsing is a natural part of the recovery journey, that you don’t really get sober until you’ve been knocked down a time or two. Worse, people assume that long term recovery is really just intermittent recovery. Anyone who might truly be something called an addict or an alcoholic couldn’t possibly stay sober for decades the rest of their lives. They can. They do. So can you.
Relapse doesn’t have to be part of your story. It’s okay if it is. Even if you don’t relapse by means of drugs and alcohol, you are likely to commit many other relapses. The many “ism’s” addicts and alcoholics face are the various character traits and personality qualities which can get in the way. Other compulsive or impulsive behaviors, from food addictions to jealousy and obsessive thinking, can get in the way sometimes. After we spend a considerable amount of time removing drugs and alcohol from our bodies, these isms can become just as painful. When we fall into these old habits and behaviors, it causes us emotional pain and often has a negative effect on others.
Progress in Recovery
Thankfully, recovery is about progress rather than perfection. These small lapses are merely mistakes rather than failures. One thing has to be done “perfectly” in recovery all the time and that is staying sober. For those days, months, weeks, or years when you just feel like you’re living one failure or one mistake after another, remember this:
- Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff: If you’re entire day is thrown because you left your hot coffee on the counter before heading out the door, you’re taking things far too seriously.
- Encourage Goal Setting: Goals are something you can strive for to change any behaviors you think are heading the wrong direction.
- Allow Yourself To Throw In The Towel: Don’t give up on yourself or your sobriety. If you’re trying something in another area of life that just isn’t going to pan out, know it’s okay to put your energy elsewhere.
LEAD Recovery Center has created a leadership based program which uses life coaching and a mentoring system allowing our clients to grow and set an example for others. Through immersive adventure experiences we help clients learn how to succeed, and how to fail, while staying sober. For more information, call 800-380-0012.