Finding Determination to Live Sober

Finding Determination to Live Sober

Mindfulness can become a linchpin for a healthy life far beyond recovery

Choosing a sober life is not a one-time event, but a lifelong decision. The motivation to maintain sobriety ebbs and flows, but there are a variety of sources from which to draw determination. It is vital for an individual at any level of rehab to have a number of resources that will help him find and maintain sobriety. If you or a loved one is struggling with Lorcet abuse, learn how to strengthen your determination to live a sober life.

Using SMART Goals in Recovery

One significant reason an individual may lose the long-term battle for sobriety is because she did not set effective goals, and as a result lost focus. A good goal follows the SMART pattern:

  • Specific: A goal should address who, what, when, where, which and why. If it does not, it is a hope, not a goal.
  • Measurable: This type of goal allows a person to establish concrete criteria for measuring progress against it.
  • Attainable: An attainable goal is as much about self-image as anything else. An individual must believe they can reach the goal.
  • Realistic: A goal must be grounded in reality. As a simple example, the morbidly obese man who never exercises should not set a six-week goal to run in a marathon.
  • Time-bound: A goal without a deadline is a dream.

When a person in recovery applies SMART goals, he is able to build momentum because he will accomplish those goals, if set appropriately. When he begins recovery, a goal could be to be alcohol-free for 24 hours. Once he accomplishes that target, he can extend to 36 hours. Then 48 hours. This process begins a new history of success, rather than continuing the sense of failure alcoholics so often struggle with. As each SMART goal is met, he can set a new one, and in the process establish and maintain momentum.

Applying Mindfulness Principles to Rediscover Determination

At some point, continuing to be goal-driven can become wearisome to the soul, and can actually sap momentum. One consideration at this point is to apply the holistic methods of mindfulness. Though this is still largely unexamined, some believe a nonjudgmental mindset toward life is a good indicator that mindfulness will be a method that is helpful for an individual.

Here are some distinct ways in which self-awareness can support recovery.

  1. Learn to tell a different story. As an individual becomes aware of his mental processes, he is able to identify when his imagination gets the best of him. Then he can choose to reject the repercussions of the story, and walk a different path.
  2. Avoid danger zones. Once a recovering addict understands where she is weak, she can actively avoid these circumstances. Even if the moments seem innocuous, the mindful person knows herself. She knows what will set her off. Then, she can choose to avoid it, no matter how silly it might seem to others.
  3. Stay centered on strengths. Just like each person has weaknesses, strengths are also a part of every individual’s make-up. It is too easy for an addict to believe that he has nothing good in him. Mindfulness frees the addict from this lie, and gives him the courage to know he does have strengths.
  4. Extend mindfulness beyond recovery. One specific benefit to utilizing mindfulness techniques in recovery is that these tools are applicable to all aspects of life. Many of the recovery methods an addict learns are most useful in the process of recovery only. Mindfulness can become a linchpin for a healthy life far beyond recovery.
  5. Meditate to calm the mind. Meditation can be a valuable tool to minimize stress and anxiety in the midst of the tumult that is common in recovery.

Mindfulness can be vital to sustaining recovery. Understanding your own strengths and weaknesses, and dwelling deeply in that awareness, can open the path to sobriety.

Sober Living Is a Lifelong Commitment

Often rehab is viewed in the public eye as an event, but this perspective is dangerous and incomplete. An addict never becomes free of the draw or the pull to reengage with his drug or choice. Rather, he must make choices, often on a daily basis even years after his last use, to stay sober. Having the variety of resources mentioned above is vital to maintain sobriety.

Perhaps the best motivation is to remember what is at stake. The bottom line is this: addiction and abuse is extremely risky, and could endanger your life. Your sobriety is too important to allow yourself to relapse during a weak moment.

The risks and the cost of addiction are too high. If you are struggling with Lorcet addiction, the most important thing to remember is that you are not alone. We can help you. We can answer your questions. The admission counselors at our toll-free, 24 hour helpline can help you learn more about addiction. They can help you find your way.