Substances mask our problems. They also numb us to some of life’s greatest joys. When people with a history of substance misuse remove the barrier of drugs or alcohol, they begin the journey of experiencing richer, fuller lives. Through addiction recovery, you learn so many things about yourself, including how strong you are, interests you never knew you had and what it feels like to be truly present.
Like recovery itself, self-discovery is a process. After the first few days or weeks of treatment, you will experience thoughts and emotions that seem foreign. You benefit from knowing what to expect along the way. The process is different for everyone, but you can expect a few common experiences in your journey.
Learning Why You’ve Struggled With Substance Misuse
One of the key parts of addiction recovery is discovering why you have been struggling with substance misuse. Substance use disorder is not about having a good time. You will confront past trauma, anxiety or depression that have contributed to your habits. It isn’t comfortable, but it is necessary. These realizations help people come to terms with important aspects of their identity, and through that deeper understanding they learn important lessons about themselves.
Some creatives use their addiction as an excuse to avoid recovery, but the idea that substance use fuels creativity is toxic. Through recovery, that myth will be shattered. You will find that substance use impairs creativity. Even people who never believed themselves to be creative often find an outlet to express themselves and stay engaged with the world around them.
Presence is impossible to achieve on drugs and alcohol. In fact, substance use is all about escaping the present, which means that substance use is often an excuse not to live fully in the moment. Addiction recovery teaches you to be aware of yourself and mindful of how you feel. You will be more available to others and engaged in tasks you are performing. Presence is one of the most profound benefits of sobriety.
Connecting with Your Body Through Physical Activity
People with substance use disorder often neglect their health. Being physically active, even at lighter intensities, gives your life structure and helps your mind and body heal. A devotion to exercise is one of the most commonly used tools that people in recovery rely on to rediscover themselves.
Building New Relationships and Repairing Old Ones
The people you meet in recovery, whether it’s others facing similar situations or the professionals giving you care, become invaluable allies in finding a new purpose in life. You’ll also be equipped to connect with others in ways that were previously impossible. The relationships you rebuild are perhaps even more important. Through addiction recovery, you have the chance to reconnect to old friends and family members that were lost due to substance misuse.
We all have things in our lives to be grateful for. Even those of us who have had the most difficult lives imaginable find inspiration and peace through gratitude. Understanding the many things and people you have to be thankful for positions you to fully appreciate the benefits of being substance-free.
Discovering Tools That You Can Apply to All Aspects of Life
People with substance use disorder learn many tools in recovery. Those tools are useful well-beyond addiction recovery itself. Exercise, mindfulness, gratitude and the other tools people learn while in recovery help them in their careers, relationships and stressful situations. Our experiences teach us several lessons about ourselves that empower us to accomplish great things in our personal lives.
We are all fallible, and we have all made mistakes. People with a history of drug and alcohol use usually know so many others who weren’t fortunate enough to live through their addictive disease. Knowing how fortunate we are, despite all the setbacks we have faced, keeps us humble. This humility empowers us, and it enables us to be present in our own lives.
Expecting the Unexpected in Addiction Recovery
In recovery, you will find unexpected strengths and weaknesses. You will cultivate unexpected interests. You will also build relationships that you never would have experienced had you not chosen the brave path of recovery. The things you will appreciate most about being substance-free are the ones you could never have predicted.
When you’ve decided to take the first steps to recovery or to restart your journey, know that you can always reach out to BRC Recovery. We know how important it is to help each person find their own path. Our team helps those who have difficulty staying substance-free. Call 1-866-461-1759 to discuss your treatment options with our admissions staff.