If you are anything like me, the hardest part about being an addict in recovery means, there is no “quick fix” to the situation. After all, that’s what I’d been chasing all those years of addiction; trying to band-aid the real issues with the quick fix of a bottle and a blackout. Well, that’s no longer an option, and luckily no longer a desire, but even that came with lots of work and even more time.
It’s easy to get lost in discouragement because it stares you in the face daily. I read a lot of articles, books, and blogs about how to keep busy with crafts, or exercise, even religion to better redirect yourself back on track. Those are all wonderful things and very useful and rewarding habits to adopt; although EVERYTHING left out the most important habit to practice.
Let’s face it, most people who drink themselves to near death (as in my case), aren’t putting their best interests first. I know, I personally, didn’t drink myself to Cirrhosis because I loved myself. I realized it was time to build healthy habits instead of self-destructing even more. So, in the event, you, like me, find yourself lacking in the self-love department at times, here are some keys to keep you going strong.
- TREAT YOURSELF LIKE YOUR FRIEND- We tend to be our biggest critics, but social media makes it easy for anyone to judge everyone else, so leave it to the people who have nothing better to do with their time. Lighten up on yourself. Forgive yourself. Encourage yourself. Comfort yourself when you are sad, reassure yourself when you feel scared of new beginnings, and for the love of all things in this world that are good and true, LOVE YOURSELF!
- YOU ARE ENOUGH- Stop comparing yourself to anyone else. No one in the world could tell me your story, not your mom, not your significant other, not your bestie from grade school, none of those people can tell me your story, from A to Z what you felt, saw and experienced, and no one can take it away from you, no one can add to it; it’s yours. Make sure to remember that before you try to compare yourself to anyone else, 10 times out of 10 you will lose comparing apples to oranges.
- CELEBRATE THE BABY STEPS- Believe it or not, there was a time in your life when everything was a first; first laugh, first doctor visit. Obviously, in your adult life, little victories change, but celebrate them nonetheless! Instead of rejoicing with a bottle of vodka, I reward myself with some steak and lobster; easily more satisfactory than a liquid diet. Seriously though, do you think the New England Patriots would come out and be like, “You know what we don’t want to play anymore. We have won enough, it's not fun anymore.”
These are just the tip of the iceberg of self-love, but they are cornerstones to helping you build better mental practices. Hope they help!