5 Ways To Address Fear In Addiction Recovery

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5 Ways to Address Fear in Addiction RecoveryConfronting our worse fears with courage is not only a life lesson, but also a lesson and tool in recovery and reaching sobriety. When a person struggling with addiction decides to continue abusing alcohol or drugs, even after the realization of their addiction, they are either in denial, or have fear of facing sobriety. Drug abuse tends to make people feel safe from life stressors, but in reality it just makes it worse. But what does a person in recovery have to fear?

For one, addicts fear the withdrawal period. Withdrawal symptoms cause much difficulty in recovery, negatively effecting the body and mind as a result of being abstinent from the user's drug of choice. Alcohol withdrawal for example, can lead to muscle aches, headaches, nausea and insomnia; also, the person's personality and mood would shift to being more irritable, aggressive, depressed or emotionally unstable. This lasts for no more than a week.

Another fear is accepting life without drugs or mind-altering substances; this means that responsibilities and challenges would have to be faced, and no longer can the recovering addict hide behind drugs/alcohol to numb the pain, or make excuses.

However, despite these factors, there are ways to address fear in addiction recovery. Here are 5 helpful principles to keep in mind when addressing fear in addiction recovery:

1. Focus on today, not yesterday or tomorrow: The best a recovering individual can do is stay sober today, and not worry about what happened in the past, or what will happen in the future. It's ok to make plans for the future, and reconcile with people of the past, but you don't have to be anxious or concerned about it. Focus on the now.

2. Fight negativity with positive thinking/statements: Being overly negative in your way of thinking is being unrealistic about the world, and leads to a pessimistic outlook on life. Give yourself more credit and continue to have a positive mindset about your behavior and thoughts. As long as you are trying and truly want it, you are on the right track.

3. Learn from what you experienced (or mistakes) in the past: managing your anxieties is best possible when you learn how you dealt with it in the past, so continue to do what works, and whatever doesn't work (such as blaming others or feeling self-pity) just get rid of.

4. Go at your own pace: No one is rushing your recovery, and no one is telling you to slow down. Going at your own pace allows you to grow and develop freely, which also helps the recovery process go a lot smoother. Don't fight your goals and desires, instead, guide them carefully and take it easy while in recovery.

5. Ask for help and gain assistance/support: If you really need it, don't hesitate to ask for help from a licensed counselor, a rehab specialist, or even a friend or family member. Gaining support for your recovery, especially from those who are experienced and have knowledge of the disease of addiction, often make the biggest impact in recovery. If you can't do it alone, do it as a team and results will come quicker and easier.