The Importance of Self Forgiveness in Addiction Recovery

Written by Chloe Nicosia

Self Forgiveness in Addiction Recovery – Creating Your Future

The addiction disease claimed over 64,000 souls in 2016; the largest reported overdose deaths yet. Many people are realizing how important it is for them to get professional help to finally beat their substance abuse. The journey to full recovery comes in many stages from dealing with the symptoms of withdrawal to creating a new lifestyle. Along the way, guilt is often a major emotion that recovering addicts must deal with. Self forgiveness in addiction recovery is essential for the person to achieve a new healthy way of being.

In this article, we will look at how to forgive yourself after addiction for all of the things you did to those around you and yourself.

Dealing with Negative Emotions in Recovery

Some of the feelings of guilt that people experience during their treatment and recovery are as a result of their behavior while under the influence of the drug. At the time, they may not think much about it as their focus is on obtaining more drugs or alcohol, but once the addiction fades and their normal emotions and responses return, people often think back on what they did. Some people may have stolen from loved ones, lost their job putting hardships on their family, cheated on their spouse or ruined their marriage.

A part of addiction recovery is how to forgive yourself after addiction now that you are in the right state of mind again and dealing with negative emotions in recovery. The following looks at the best ways to go about self forgiveness in addiction recovery.

Go Easy on Yourself

Self forgiveness in addiction recovery can be about not being too hard on yourself as guilt can be the cause of relapse. In order for you to improve your condition, you must start to see what happened as part of the disease of addiction and not something you would normally do. Acknowledge what you did, but only so that you can accept it and move on. There is no use in punishing yourself for your whole life.

Each time you uncover or remember something that causes you guilt, see it as an opportunity to forgive yourself followed by letting go of the feelings.

Focus on the Present and Future

Self forgiveness in addiction recovery is about looking forward and not back. While it is important to understand how the feelings of guilt were initially brought on so as not to repeat it, dwelling on the issue only causes more pain. If past decisions are allowed to affect where you are in recovery now, it will only serve to pull you back down. Focus on the moment you are in, and look toward a brighter future.

Share Your Feelings

As addicts learn in addiction recovery, sharing your feelings is important. It helps to put into words what you are feeling, helping to sort it out in your mind and helping to bring the feelings of guilt, anger and frustration to the surface. The goal is to learn how to recognize the negative emotions associated with recovery in order to be able to quickly respond in a healthy way. Much of cognitive-behavioral therapy, a standard therapy for addiction, is about recognizing bad habits and thoughts and replacing them with healthy alternatives.

Don’t wait until feelings of guilt or anger overcome you before seeking help. Get in touch with Better Addiction Care today at 1.800.429.7690 to be put in contact with the nearest rehab.

Sources:

https://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/trends-statistics/overdose-death-rates

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugs-brains-behavior-science-addiction/treatment-recovery