Believing in Yourself: Self-Worth in Recovery

Dec 21, 2022

Continuing the journey of sobriety in recovery is not always an easy process, but it is rewarding. As we continue in recovery, we find more and more that our motivation is determined by our confidence and self-esteem. In fact, developing self-worth in recovery is one of the most critical factors in our success.

Self-Determination Theory

Self-determination theory (SDT) is crucial to understanding how essential building self-worth is in recovery. SDT is the idea that people want to be self-reliant and confident to choose their own destinies. In order to have motivation, we have to possess the confidence to believe that we can make the changes necessary to succeed. Motivation and confidence are positively linked to successful outcomes in addiction recovery.

Building self-worth, the value we hold in ourselves and our abilities, is a complex process. The external pressures and demands of the world around us can impact our confidence. However, our ability to build self-worth in recovery and beyond are rooted in our desire for positive change in our lives.

Self-Worth, Recovery, and You

Having a healthy sense of self-worth is an important component in just about every aspect of our lives. It is the motivation that drives us to be better people, to try new things, to kindle new relationships, and to strive for more.

There is a personal component as well. You deserve to feel good about yourself every day and in every way. Here are a few tips to take along with you as you work toward building healthy self-worth in recovery:

Listen to Your Own Needs and Wants

Your mind, body, and spirit will tell you what they need from you. When you listen to them, you affirm that you matter. Think positively of yourself, take care of your body, and do some of the things you enjoy, like being outdoors or reading a book.

Take Care of Yourself

Take pleasure in taking care of yourself. Know that you matter. Tell yourself every day, when you look into a mirror, that you care about yourself and want what is best for you.

Celebrate Yourself

Congratulate yourself on your accomplishments. You do not need to wait for someone else to reward you for being awesome. You are, and you deserve to be rewarded.

Be Pre-Emptive

Do the things you would have put off before. Feel the sense of accomplishment knowing your to-do list is one task shorter.

Spend Time With Loved Ones

Be around those who care about you and motivate you. When you are among people who love you and want what is best for you, you come to know the true power of self-worth and confidence. 

The Impact of Self-Worth in Recovery

Having a higher sense of self-worth in recovery has a significant impact on the success you achieve in lifelong sobriety. However, did you know that having high self-confidence has also been linked to many other aspects of your life? People with high self-esteem tend to be happier, have better career outlooks and prospects, and have better relationships. They are also more likely to take the initiative than people with low self-esteem and a pleasanter disposition.

Why might this be? Well, people who have a better sense of self-worth are less likely to question themselves and more likely to project confidence. As is noted in SDT, motivation is a critical component of success, and confidence builds upon motivation. It is as simple as believing in yourself. Knowing that you are worth all of the time and energy you invest in recovery can bring you success.

The Power of Words and Affirmations

Expressing yourself can aid in building self-worth. One of the critical components of self-expression is the ability to quantify your feelings. Most people only naturally express five basic emotions. For most people, emotions are boiled down to anger, fear, sadness, disgust, and happiness. However, there is a spectrum of emotions that we feel, with many different names.

How much better would we feel if we expressed our amusement, surprise, nostalgia, awe, craving, horror, entrancement, excitement, romance, or satisfaction? These are all words that describe how we feel and are far more specific.

When we are specific with others about how we feel, situations are less confusing. A friend may become confused if we say we are happy and afraid of making a decision concerning where to eat. However, if we are instead trepidatious about the end result but excited about the prospect of eating at a new restaurant, we have been far more precise about how we feel. 

Building Self-Worth in Recovery

Everyone has their own strengths. You know your positive attributes better than anyone else. Your strengths have gotten you this far as an alumnus, and they will continue to work for you on your lifelong sober journey.

Everyone can use a motivational speech now and again, especially when it builds new scaffolding as they construct a strong sense of self-worth. Hearing positive euphemisms can help build your confidence. As Bernard Kelvin Clive said, “Instead of begging to be picked by others, you have the choice to pick yourself and build your brand.”

No matter the journey that you are on, remember the words of Scott Barry Kaufman, “Every person on this earth is full of great possibilities that can be realized through imagination, effort, and perseverance.” 

When you realized that you needed help to seek treatment and recover from substance use disorder, it likely left you shaken. When our confidence is disturbed like that, rebuilding can take a lot of time and effort. Now that you are an alumnus in recovery, you are beginning to learn how to believe in yourself once more. You are building a new life, one in which you prize your determination and commitment. Having a positive self-image can come from individual therapy or being a part of a larger community, both of which can be found through Renaissance Ranch. We are here to support you in your times of need. Call us today at (801) 308-8898.