When working through the reintegration process, we’ll want to treat ourselves with as much patience, compassion and understanding as we possibly can. We’re dealing with new forms of stress that we’ve never experienced before. We’re approaching our old lives with huge changes in our consciousness and our awareness. We’re thinking and feeling things we never have before. We’re being tested mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually, and with these intense challenges often comes fear. We fear relapsing. We fear being perceived as weak or vulnerable. We fear being powerless over our addictions and finding ourselves right where we started, at rock bottom, suffering. Our fear and self-doubt make the reintegration process all the more difficult, so we’ll want to give ourselves as much love and support as we can.
We’ll want to be our own allies, rather than adding to our stress with undue self-judgment, impatience and criticism. After years of struggling with addictions and mental health issues, we’ve gotten accustomed to beating ourselves up. We’re often filled with regret and remorse, shame and embarrassment. We cause ourselves additional mental and emotional pain by refusing to accept and forgive ourselves. We self-harm and cause ourselves physical pain as well. We’ll need to shed all of these old self-destructive patterns if we want to recover successfully. We’ll need to develop healthier coping mechanisms that support us in our goal of staying sober. Where we used to run to our drugs of choice and use them as forms of escapism, we’ll need to start learning how to face our issues and our demons head on. This is a profound test of our courage, strength and self-reliance. We’ll need to stay strong in the face of our pain, rather than letting it overpower and dominate us, making us retreat to our addictions for relief. We’ll need to find other ways of bringing ourselves relief and making ourselves feel better. We’ll need to strengthen our self-care and spiritual practices, enabling us to handle all the challenges that come with being newly sober.
An important way in which we can make reintegration easier for ourselves is by enlisting the support of other people. Where we used to isolate and try to handle our problems on our own, for fear of being judged or rejected, now we’ll need to learn how to lean on other people. We’ll need to realize that there is strength and courage in asking for help and allowing ourselves to receive it. We’re used to resisting anything that we associate with weakness or vulnerability. We’ll need to start seeing the beauty in letting ourselves be loved and supported.
We’ll start learning new ways of coping that will make the reintegration process for ourselves. As we’re healing, we’ll want to dedicate energy to practicing these healthy coping strategies, supporting ourselves and loving ourselves unconditionally along the way.
Bayview Recovery specializes in addiction recovery and has helped thousands navigate their way to sobriety. We are here to help you, too. Call 888-570-7154 today for more information.