Whether you have a few drinks every week or use drugs on a daily basis, you're ultimately still the only person who can decide if your substance use is making your life worse. Don't assume that drugs or alcohol are harmless just because you only choose to use them occasionally; it's more important to examine why you make this choice, and what you're attempting to achieve. On the same note, don't assume that a sober life will automatically make everything better.
12 Step programs often perpetuate the dangerous myth that sobriety is the only way to be successful. They focus exclusively on the effort to quit drugs or alcohol, without solving the underlying feelings and needs that inspired you to use in the first place. That's why so many participants focus exclusively on this goal, only to discover that it is much more complicated than that. It's easy to see why their success rates are so low, especially when they apply this uniform approach to everyone.
You're the only person who can figure out why you value the temporary pleasures of drugs and alcohol. Once you understand why they appeal to you specifically, it's easier to seek alternative behaviors and goals that fulfill your needs more fully. It also allows you to address the problems or experiences that are making this feel like a priority.
After your body detoxes completely and there are no drugs or alcohol in your system, you'll begin to feel differently. If you've been consistently high or drunk for a long period of time, this experience might actually come as a shock. Without chemicals to distort and dull your senses, you'll be able to appreciate certain pleasures and value healthier behaviors. However, if your use heightened your emotional extremes or overstimulated your senses, you may need time to adjust to the more even pace of daily life.
Sobriety is simply the absence of substances from your system. It's a physical state, not a guarantee of emotional or psychological health. It's important to focus on realistic goals and desires, rather than working only toward sobriety itself without a plan of action. Make a plan for the future, and when your perception is clear again, start putting that plan into action.
Stay positive, rather than obsessing over the need to deprive yourself of specific substances. It's impossible to prepare for every single possibility, but if you decide which changes you want to make, you'll already know what to do when the effects of your old life wear off. Maybe you'll implement a new nutrition plan to keep your sober body strong and healthy. Maybe you'll exercise to maintain your energy levels and feel better about yourself. Planning for new goals in career, education, relationships, and other long term goals and dreams will keep you motivated, interested and learning and not focused on what you are "deprived" of or "missing" out on from not using.
No matter what you decide to do with your sobriety, you have the power to make it happen. Just focus on the many benefits you'll gain, not the substances you'll quit. If taking a positive, proactive plan of action sounds like an approach that you would be successful with, call today for more information.