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“Forever” can be quite a terrifying word in the context of addiction recovery. Not only are most addicts and alcoholics commitment-phobes to begin with, but the idea of staying completely away from mood and mind-altering substances “forever” can actually prevent individuals from getting sober at all. If you have been considering getting sober, there is a good chance that you have given yourself 10,000 reasons why continuing to drink and/or use is a better option. “I’m not ready to get sober; if I get sober, I’ll never be able to drink again. What if I want to participate in a champagne toast at my wedding? What if I have the opportunity to try an expensive, aged scotch? What if some new drug comes out that I really, really want to try?” The what if’s and the hypotheticals are very, very dangerous. Engaging in this type of thinking is called “justification” and “rationalization.” We justify reasons to continue wasting our lives away as we engage in a vicious cycle of self-destructive behavior… and why? Simply put, addiction is a psychological disease (as well as a physical, emotional and spiritual disease). Addiction is a disease of denial. Those who are suffering at the hands of a severe substance dependency disorder typically do everything in their power to convince themselves and others that there is no issue at all. “Oh please, you’re being over-dramatic. I can stop whenever I want.”
In so many words… The idea of getting sober and committing to recovery long-term is enough to send most substance-addicted individuals running in the opposite direction. However, there are many benefits – aside from the obvious – to staying sober long-term.
Taking Things One Day at a Time
If you are considering getting sober, it is important that you learn to live in the present moment and begin considering taking things in small increments. Rather than say to yourself, “If I enter into addiction treatment, I will never be able to drink or use drugs again,” say something like, “I cannot continue living like this. I am going to give myself the opportunity to heal and see how I like sobriety.” Or, “I’ll give myself a year, and if I don’t like the way things are going I can always go back to drinking and drugging.” Of course, we are quite optimistic that if you do give yourself the opportunity to get sober, you will be more than happy with the results.
5 Benefits of Long-Term Sobriety
- Your health will improve dramatically over time, and you’ll deal with far fewer health-related issues in the long-run. When in the throes of active addiction you are undeniably doing severe damage to your physical body – and your brain. If you have been abusing chemical substances for years and years, you might have done lasting and/or permanent damage. However, in most cases, physical and psychological issues resolve over time with continued sobriety and a combination of therapeutic techniques. Within a matter of months you will be shocked by how physically well you feel, and your thinking patterns will start to normalize over time as well. While you are in inpatient treatment, the clinical team will help you develop a personalized aftercare program. This will include a plan for the ultimate restoration of physical and mental health.
- You will be able to pass on a tradition of recovery and emotional and mental health. Addiction is a genetic and hereditary disease. There is a good chance that the behaviors you engaged in while active in your addiction were learned from one of your parents or from another close relative. Addiction itself is a complicated disease, one that is coupled with a wide range of behavioral and emotional symptoms. Say your father was an alcoholic, and he was an angry drunk. Not only was his drinking problem likely passed down to you on a genetic level, but you probably (however unwittingly) picked up his anger and violent outbursts. He taught you to handle your problems with violence and rage. This cycle can end with you. Rather than teach your offspring how to drink and how to fight, teach them how to stay sober and effectively work through uncomfortable emotions. The choice truly is yours – you choose what you pass on.
- You will achieve – and maintain – a life beyond your wildest dreams. As soon as you enter into a 12 step program of recovery you will begin to hear this phrase a lot. “A life beyond your wildest dreams.” What does this mean? It essentially means that you will start to experience things you never deemed possible while still active in your addiction – one of those things being genuine and authentic happiness. You will be amazed by the doors that continuously open for you the longer you stay sober.
- The people you sponsor will go on to do amazing things. Not only will you be able to pass positivity down in your own family, but you will undeniably make a genuine and lasting impact on the people that you sponsor. There are few things as incredible and rewarding as watching a sponsee go on to sponsor others – the longer you stay sober, the bigger your positive impact on the world around you.
- You will realize that you are capable of doing anything you want to do with your life. When we say anything, we mean anything. The longer you stay sober the more you will learn about yourself and what makes you tick. You will uncover interests and passions that you never knew existed. You will be able to go back to school, or land a dream job, or travel to Europe and learn how to make pasta under a world-renowned Italian chef. With sobriety, anything is possible. When you first hear this, you might balk a little bit. Shaping the course of your own life probably seems like a foreign concept; and of course it does, because you were a slave to chemical substances for so long. You let active addiction dictate your life, even if it seemed like you were still in control. Once you actually regain control of your life, doors will fly open. Anything that you decide you want to do with your life, you will be able to actively work towards. Does this mean that you will be successful in every endeavor? Of course not. But you will be able to give yourself a real, fighting chance for the first time.
Intrepid Detox Residential – Our Recovery Program
Our state-of-the-art recovery center is located in the heart of Palm Beach. Florida. Our program of addiction recovery is Joint Commission certified, meaning that we hold ourselves to the highest possible clinical standard, and that our program is highly effective in helping men and women of all ages and walks of life maintain sobriety for years to come. We offer a multi-phased continuum of care, beginning with medically monitored detox and continuing with inpatient addiction treatment. Both of our programs were carefully designed by a team of experienced professionals who have either been through addiction treatment themselves or who have helped a loved one through the process. This allows our staff members a unique perspective; they consistently come from a place of compassion and respect, and work closely with clients despite their unique and individualized needs. For more information on our comprehensive and personalized program of recovery, please feel free to reach out to us at any point in time. We look forward to speaking with you soon!