The loss of control is something that is rarely associated with positive outcomes. For example, losing control of our car typically results in an accident. Losing control of our temper means that someone or something may get hurt. Losing control of our legs means that we may not be able to walk. Unfortunately, when we are actively using substances, we can lose control of our lives. Just like that car, our lives are hurtling toward a crash, typically with a devastating outcome. That is why making the decision to treat our addictions is truly taking control back from substances.
How Did We Lose Control?
Life can be so easily derailed. Particularly when we choose to numb or escape our pain with substances. The pain we suffer from abuse, loss, or other trauma, even in childhood, has a way of tormenting us to the point of desperation. That desperation turns to one drink or perhaps another substance. Then it is more, then still more. At some point, our substance use took control of our lives, holding us hostage as we watch our lives spiral out of control.
This is never our plan, of course. We tell ourselves that we are in control. We can stop drinking at any time. This is not affecting our job performance, family life, or anything else. If that is really true, why does our life look suspiciously like the car hurtling out of control? How did we get to this point, where we no longer have control over our substances, but rather they control us? That is the epitome of how addiction works.
Can We Stop the Disaster?
Sometimes, we feel like the disaster has already hit. As our lives sit in ruins around lost jobs, DUI charges, or even fatalities related to our driving under the influence, fractured family relationships, and more, we feel like it cannot get any worse. Tragically, yes, it can. However, we can stop it from getting worse.
The first thing we need to do is to make the decision to change. Stop using our substances, stop destroying everyone and everything in our path with our substance use-related behaviors. That decision must be coupled with the courage to pick up the phone and find the help we need. That help must be not only to gain sobriety, but a 100% commitment to ourselves and our complete recovery. Doing this will not prevent the consequences of our previous actions, nor will it guarantee us a perfect life. But choosing recovery will help to stop the disaster.
Never Too Late
So long as we still have a pulse, then it is never too late to heal from substance use. No matter how far we have traveled off of the road, no matter how out of control our lives seem, there is always a way back.
Discouragement, stigma, and self-esteem may try to convince us otherwise, but we can make the decision to take our life back from our substances at any point. Our resolve and commitment to ourselves will guarantee that we can reclaim the proverbial wheel of our life and take back control once again.
How to Take Control
Making the choice to take our control back means we need to find the best treatment facility that we can and make that call immediately. We make that commitment and start as soon as possible in order to keep the momentum of our decision. This momentum will help us to find our way on the recovery path without getting sidetracked or stalled, which gives us the best chances for success.
During treatment, that decision to take control must be renewed every day, every hour of every day. Once we have taken hold of the wheel of our lives again, we need to hold on tight, no matter how difficult it gets. As we learn to live without substances, learn to accept ourselves and find the source of our substance use in therapy, and do all of the work to get our lives on track, we will find that we are in control of our lives again. We can make our own choices and choose our life going forward without substances.
Once we have set ourselves firmly on the path to recovery, we need to continue the things each day that we know we need to do to stay in control of our lives. The habits we form in treatment can help us to continue to heal and grow in our new lifestyle. Eating nutritiously, exercising daily, and continuing with the skills we learned in treatment will help us keep our hands firmly on the wheel of our life.
We can also reach out for more support with meetings, friends, and family, and additional therapy to keep us strong and firm in our resolve. By seeking and embracing our treatment and keeping ourselves firmly committed to our recovery process, we empower ourselves to take control back from substances.
Seeking treatment for substance use helps us take back the wheel of our lives. Entering the recovery path sets us on the road we need to be on. Continuing our new habits and skills makes sure that we maintain control of our lives. AToN Center can help put us back in the driver’s seat, back in control of our lives. Call us at (888) 535-1516 so you can take charge of your life again.