Recovery is a long and twining journey. Sometimes the recovery process seems like a stroll in the park and at other times it would feel too burdensome. That is why it is important to adopt some practices which make recovery a little easier.
One of the most important and effective practices in addiction recovery is Having an Attitude of Gratitude, i.e. being grateful for the things you have in your life. If you start practicing it, you will see that your bar of happiness and satisfaction will raise a notch higher.
It is a saddening situation, that most of us, most of the times, focus on the trivial things that happen with us, maybe during our day-to-day routine; like, traffic on the way to work, a long queue at grocery shop counter etc. They frustrate us as we allow our mind to get irritated with even an ignorable meager stimulus. Instead, we chose to ignore such things, which would activate a positive response and happy vibes in us. What we need to do is to just take some time to appreciate the small blessings that we experience each day. Wake up to listen to the chirping birds, see the big sun on the huge sky. Be happy, minimize stress and build a solid foundation on your way to achieve success in addiction recovery.
Being grateful for little things like healthy food, a good night sleep, meeting an old school teacher, talking to old people who have helped you grow with their scolding, stories or their love- all these things may seem vague, but these definitely would get help us to lead a better life and give us a feeling of being a good human being.
We have outlined a few things you can do to begin incorporating gratitude into your life:
Keep a Gratitude Journal- Write down at least two things that you feel grateful for each day especially when it’s a glorious day. You can write as many as you want but make sure two is your minimum. It could be a garden full of flowers that you saw during morning walk, or met a stranger who gave compliments to you for your handbag or met an old friend after a long time. It could be any small or big thing. This exercise will help you think out of the box and enhance your ability to identify things that you can be grateful for, especially on a ‘bad day’. In the beginning, this may just look like it is difficult. You might not want to open your notebook and do such exercise everyday, but trust me, once you get into the habit you will not skip any day. When you feel low, read over your gratitude journal/notebook and remember all the things that you have given you some moments of happiness. This will help you by reminding you of beautiful things and people in your life.
Practice mindfulness in everything you do- Whether you are working on a new project, taking the dog for a walk , cooking some new dish, or washing the dishes; do so mindfully i.e. give your 100% in everything that you do, clearing your mind of wandering thoughts. Practicing mindfulness will not only keep you focused but will help you stay away from negative thoughts. Your mind will not chatter anything and you will be able to solve your problems in an effective manner. Mindfulness can help you calm your mind when you face a stressful situation, allowing you to make a logical informed decision instead of one made by purely reacting to your emotions.
Embrace Imperfection- Nobody in this world is perfect. However, we all have a tendency to focus on things not done properly rather than on the things we have done well. To those who are in addiction recovery ,there may be days when you feel low and feel that you are not up-to-the-mark when in comes to your work or your own self. May be you are unable to stop yourself from having a drink. At this point you don’t need to beat yourself with negative thoughts rather be grateful for the things you can do well. Focus on your addiction recovery plan.
Keep A Positive Mindset- one of the most spiritual person, once said ,”Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it.”Life will throw out of control situations at you, but you can control how you react to such situations. You need to start accepting the people and things as they are and control your reaction towards them. This will empower you and help in addiction recovery. In their journey of addiction recovery, Addicts are grateful for one thing – Sobriety. To put you in a positive mindset towards recovery, be grateful of how far you have come as well as all the little things you are blessed with. You will be able to conquer obstacles calmly and live a long and healthy life in recovery. However , if you are having trouble being grateful for the things you have and are slipping towards relapse, be sure to reach out to someone you trust, be it a counselor, good friend and loved one. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.