In the beginning stages of recovery, we are all at a loss about how to cope and interact with others; being ourselves is a task with which we are suddenly unfamiliar. We now have to navigate social situations, stress, work, and family differently. We do not have the luxury of falling backward into alcohol and/or other substances, which we mistakenly believed helped us before we decided to recover. Now, we force ourselves to face life sober, and it seems terrifying.
Do not fear — you are not alone in this feeling of self-consciousness. You will gain confidence and can withstand the pressures of life without relapse, but your confidence will take time to develop. However, to start developing your self-confidence, you need to start learning how to love yourself.
Change Your Language
The first step to loving ourselves and boosting our self-confidence is changing our language. We must stop labeling ourselves by our behaviors and diagnoses. We are NOT addicts; we struggle with addiction to alcohol and/or other substances. There is so much more to us than our addictions. We are fathers, brothers, friends and play many different roles in our lives and the lives of others.
We must recognize there is more to us than our past behaviors. We were not created to struggle but to thrive. The first step to thriving is recognizing our potential to thrive, and recognition comes from labeling ourselves as we are, not by our past behaviors. With a language change, we can better believe in ourselves and our abilities to be more than who we were in our past. This shift in our beliefs allows us to have greater self-confidence.
Learn How to Thrive
Learning how to thrive takes time and effort. Thriving also requires our focus on treating underlying conditions. Comorbid conditions such as depression, bipolar, PTSD, and anxiety are often root sources for substance use disorder (SUD). The root cause of our addictions is often a yearning to escape the symptoms of these conditions, resulting in self-medicating, which eventually leads to addictive behaviors. These behaviors are not a moral failing but a longing to be as functional as others while battling severe conditions. Therefore, thriving requires treatment of all the conditions we are experiencing to function without alcohol and/or other substances.
Thriving also means taking a step out of our comfort zone and trying to live our lives to the fullest. We deserve big things. Our past addictive behaviors kept us from exploring our full potential. Now, as we explore recovery, we can begin to build the life we want and deserve while building our resilience and self-confidence.
Do Not Fear Making Mistakes
We all make mistakes. As each of us progresses through our life, we fumble. Our mistakes are a result of our being fallible humans. We are frail and prone to making errors throughout our lives. Do not let your mistakes define you. So many professionals talk about living looking toward the future while staying in the present. They explain your experiences as if you were driving a car through your life. We must be aware of our present surroundings while looking at the road ahead. We cannot effectively move forward if we are constantly looking in the rearview mirror. We must learn from our mistakes but not dwell on them.
Keep Moving Forward
As stated earlier, we cannot live in the present while dwelling on the past. If we learn from our past mistakes, we can avoid them in the future. As we grow stronger in our recovery, we learn to balance our relationships, words, actions, and thoughts. As we gain greater control over these, we grow in self-confidence.
Self-confidence in recovery, as well as in life, takes time and effort. We cannot expect to be proud of all we do in the beginning stages. However, our taking steps to be in recovery is something incredible. We should all be proud of who we are choosing to become. As we move forward, we will become more of the person we always wanted to be and learn how to appreciate our choices.
Things to Remember
We are worthwhile individuals who deserve a full life. We have made mistakes with our past behaviors relative not only to alcohol and/or other substances. We will make mistakes every day, but those mistakes do not define us. We must keep moving forward. We must decide in a big way to be the best person we can be. Only once we choose to thrive in our lives will we be able to say with complete confidence, “I am a worthwhile person.” Stating this, we are declaring our self-confidence and value to the world and those around us.
As we progress in recovery, we develop more self-confidence, but only if we are open to trying new things and pushing ourselves beyond our past. We deserve a life worth living and CAN achieve that life if we are willing to start thriving. At Renaissance Ranch, we believe in your ability to recover and succeed in your life. We offer support for every step of the recovery process. We offer many programs — from detox to sober living and after treatment through our Band of Brothers network. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction to alcohol and/or other substances, do not live in fear any longer. Our advisors are waiting to help you out of your struggles. Call Renaissance Ranch today at (801) 308-8898 and learn how we can help you develop the self-confidence to begin the life you deserve. Make the decision to recover today. You are worth recovery.