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Decision Making in Recovery – Recovery is all about starting a new life free from addiction. Starting a new life requires taking chances, chances you probably were not allowed to take or did not care about before entering recovery. You have to learn to make decisions that are life altering to try out healthier behaviors as part of that new life. This means that you are at the beginning of an incredible journey that is ongoing. You are never truly done unless you choose to quit. Do you have what it takes to make these decisions? Can you give it your all with a sense of confidence? Do you trust yourself? Since so many people in recovery have trust issues this can be difficult for the majority, but there are things you can do to help yourself.
The first step is to give yourself a clean slate. There is no point in holding on to the past now that you are in recovery. You cannot change what you have done to yourself or others in the past. If you can then try to fix it but if not, then let it go. This is not to say you forget as you do not want to repeat past mistakes, but repeatedly beating yourself up does no good for anyone. Letting go of the past will also make it easier to concentrate on healing and growing. In fact there is so much to be done when first entering recovery that you need to focus on the present and what you want in the future. So you have two real choices.
You can face recovery head on or sink back into the despair that is addiction. Depression, anxiety, and stress are common in recovery, but with time these too can dissipate. It may take time, but if you embrace recovery and work it slowly then you can be successful. You must also remember that recovery is a daily, a moment by moment process, that you have to keep in focus. The good news is that it gets easier in time. It may not be perfect in a month or even a year, but it will get easier. As you start to make changes and achieve you need to learn to embrace each milestone and celebrate. Every victory, no matter how small deserves recognition for a job well done. In learning to celebrate these little victories you will become more successful. One success will lead to another.
When things do get tough, ask for help. No one recovers alone and this makes a support system highly important. Your support system does not have to be huge, but those in it need to be willing to offer support during the good and bad times. As part of the support offered, take action to regain self trust. Use your support system for accountability. Make lists and prioritize goals that you are willing to share. Always remember that if you do slip up, admit it and start over. One failure or even may does not mean you cannot be successful again. As you grow in recovery you will gain more self trust and as you gain trust in yourself you can also grow in recovery. This is important as you must learn to trust yourself in order to earn the trust of others. No matter how you choose to go forward in recovery, remember that you have to find what works for you and stick with it. It may not be perfect and it may not work for the next person, but if you are finding success, keep going.
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