By Steps to Recovery on November 29, 2012

Who are you in recovery? How do you define yourself? Do you live in the past, allowing the choices you made in your addiction to stake claim on your life now, in your sobriety? Or do you look to the choices you have made in recovery, do you live in the present, recognizing yourself for all of the progress you have made and the choices you are currently making? You can choose to be whoever you want to be, especially if you envision yourself there.

It is so difficult to overcome the guilt, shame, sadness, anger and etc that lingers from addiction and all that we experience when we are actively using, and the effect it has on our lives. It is so hard to give ourselves the credit we deserve. It is so hard to use the “friend voice” on ourselves.

Why is this so hard? Why is it so hard to talk to ourselves the way we would speak to a friend who needed to talk about their troubles? I know that if a friend came to me and said that they feel like such a loser because they had made some bad choices, I wouldn’t tell them that I agree with them. I would listen to them and then point out all the reasons I could think of that they are not a loser, and let them know why I think they are amazing.  Why is it so hard to turn the friend voice on ourselves?

Each person is their own biggest critic, and the sooner we learn to look to what we are doing instead of what we have done…Who we have become or are becoming instead of who we were, we will have the key to loving ourselves more and letting go of something we no longer have any control over. The past is gone, the only thing we can change is the present moment, the only influence we have is over our future.

The sooner we come to terms with what we have been through the sooner we can move on and start building a different future. There is no productivity in lingering in the past beyond healing unresolved trauma. It should be a priority in your recovery to get in there, acknowledge what you have been through, learn from it and move on. No regrets. Everything you have ever been through has made you into the resilient, amazing, powerful person you are today.

How do you define yourself?