Denise Bertin-Epp CEO, Urban Recovery
RECOVERY HURDLES: Transcending, Embracing, Reaching Beyond.
In our recovery journey, getting to a point of willingness can be terrifying. It’s hard to ask for help, as though admitting we need help exposes us to further injury. It can also feel overwhelming—giving up control causes us to feel vulnerable. When we feel vulnerable, it is easy to look for ways to shut down the recovery process and stay trapped in the ‘devil that we know.’
As such, nearly everyone begins the road to recovery with a degree of resistance. There are several obstacles that might keep you or the person who you love from seeking help. It’s important to have some awareness of these hurdles, because being ignoring them can result in substantial and costly delays in receiving the assistance you need to put your life and relationships back on a track of optimum functioning.
Let’s look at some of these hurdles. Remember, knowledge is power. Becoming aware of these hurdles will loosen their power over you and your disease.
Here are some things to look for in our thinking and behaviour:
- The F* Its: People who struggle in finding a lasting path of recovery talk about a moment in which all their good intentions evaporate and are replaced by an overwhelming sense of, ‘screw this. I’m going to use.” We need concrete tools and supportive personal relationships to push back against this compulsive and destructive thought. Residential treatment programs supply you with them.
- I’m not ready. We become ready through our personal experience of “being sick and tired of being sick and tired.” Every person who suffers from an addictive disorder knows that there’s a better life waiting. Reach out and embrace it.
- What will others think? Addiction issues can be embarrassing—humiliating, even. The last thing any addict wants to do is admit that they made a mistake, that they are in trouble. The truth is, anyone who really cares about you and your well-being already knows there’s a problem. They are eager for change. So, seeking treatment will bring relief to friends, family and co-workers. There are more allies than enemies on your road to recovery. Find them.
- I will lose my job, family, standing in school. Here is the thing: seeking treatment for addiction issues will only increase your chances of keeping these things. This is a fact. It may seem like a lot of time, but the 30/60/90 day treatment that you are seeking is a small amount of time compared to the years addiction can take from us. It is worthwhile to strategize and make time for help. Often these arrangements are less daunting then they can initially seem. Rearrange your calendar.
- Defiance. Most of us are resistant to being told what to do. We feel we can ‘do it on our own’ and that we don’t need help. We’ve been highly successful in most every other area in our life and feel we can muscle our way through this. There’s safety in numbers and demise in isolation. Find your tribe
- Depressive attitude. When we’re feeling bad, there’s a lot to complain about. Because our world had become so challenging, it is only natural to focus on the negative. Unfortunately, that only amplifies the negative. Learning to find the good can take some time, but it happens. Begin your search.
- Distractions. Life presents unlimited opportunities for distractions. At the top of the list are ‘romances and finances.’ Be on the lookout for boredom and to be prepared in recovery for some restlessness as you change. Spending time with others who are ahead of you on a path of recovery will make your journey easier. Find a healing path populated by healthy others.
- Avoiding Painful and Difficult Truths. It the short run, it may seem like it’s easy to keep living as we are, but deep down we know that to continue on as we are living will only deepen our pain and lead to further personal and professional destruction. Recovery requires us to cultivate a new relationship with honesty. You can find a resolution, however, if you don’t first ground yourself in truth. Explore it.
At Urban Recovery, we understand and appreciate that recovery is an enormous undertaking. Our role in this process is to assist you in finding a path that resonates with you and to provide you with the most effective, empirically-based recovery strategies to elevate you to a higher, more authentic level of functioning.