Certain things can shock us into reality, such as a DUI or arrest, a car accident, our partner leaving us, the loss of a job, or physical or emotional abuse that we have inflicted on loved ones while using substances. In most of those situations, we choose or are “encouraged” to enter treatment.
Even for lesser reasons, we may choose to go to treatment, but there is truly only one reason that we recover: ourselves.
Catalysts for Treatment
When we use substances, there are consequences. Some of those consequences can be life-changing for us and others.
Many of those consequences impact our relationships with others, whether it be family, friend, or work-related. When the consequences get big enough or impact others, it can be a wakeup call for us.
That becomes a catalyst for us to seek treatment for our substance use.
Sometimes we are not entirely invested in achieving sobriety or getting treatment. Despite suffering such negative consequences in relation to our substance use, we are not ready to change.
Perhaps we still struggle to admit to ourselves that we have an addiction, or perhaps we do not feel that we have the strength to make a change. Whatever our reason, we are only responding to the people around us or the events which have become catalysts for us to enter treatment for substance use.
The Desire to Change
If we are lacking the desire to change ourselves, going to treatment on our own accord could be of the catalyst for change. If we are checking off a list for someone else, fulfilling a court-ordered mandate, or a condition of employment, the change could be temporary.
In these situations, it is not our desire to change our habits, we are merely doing something for someone else. The motivation is external, not internal.
Changing for Others
When we approach change for the benefit of other people, we may even end up resenting treatment and all of the decisions around it. Or worse, we may resent the people who encouraged us to seek treatment, even if they had our best interests at heart.
Entering treatment for substance use because of someone else’s wishes means that our efforts are not authentic, they are not coming from within ourselves. While any treatment is better than no treatment, we are unlikely to be as successful when we are following someone else’s ideas.
As is the case with relationships and so many other things in life, changing for others is never as successful as when we seek change from within.
Changing for Self
True change begins from our own intentions. When we choose treatment for ourselves, we give ourselves the opportunity to transform our lives. Rather than just doing something for someone else, our sincere desire to become sober and change our life has great power.
Treatment for substance use begins inside of us, especially if it is going to be effective. We need to dig deep and look at the reasons we have used substances in the past and address those issues in order to heal.
This level of commitment is more than just being sober, it is the desire to be healed and to do whatever it takes to achieve a new life without substances. It takes more than going through rehab and assuming that you will live happily ever after.
Entering treatment with the burning desire to heal ourselves from substance use requires dedication and hard work that begins with making the decision to seek treatment and continues every day afterward.
More Than Just Treatment
When we are not merely concerned with fulfilling a court mandate or honoring the wishes of a boss or a loved one, we seek not only treatment but also recovery. Treatment addresses the symptoms of substance use, recovery finds us willing to subject ourselves to a complete overhaul mentally, physically, and spiritually.
Recovery is only possible when we are the reason for our efforts. We are seeking healing for ourselves, regardless of the circumstances and other people in our lives. In recovery, we are willing to look into the mirror of our soul, including the pain we’ve experienced.
Seeking recovery means that we face that pain, address it, and do the work that allows ourselves to heal. We seek complete healing, not merely abstinence from our substances. We want to be free of addiction, and we are willing to do whatever it takes to achieve it.
We Are the Reason
To be able to truly recover from substance use, we need to be the reason. Not out of guilt or shame or remorse. Not because someone else wants us to or we have been ordered to.
Recovery happens when we love ourselves enough to want something different than what we have. When we actively choose to stop using substances to numb our pain.
When we decide that we don’t want to wake up with another hangover, make more excuses for our behavior, or deal with incidents that are even worse. We decide that we are worth recovery, that we are worth healing, and we are willing to do anything… for ourselves.
When you have discovered why we recover, call AToN Center at (888) 535-1516. AToN can help you navigate your own recovery. We know that you need to be invested in your own healing, and want to empower you to choose your own path in life.