September 23rd, 2020 | Updated on June 28th, 2022
Shame is unfortunately a feeling that is all too relatable among recovering addicts, and this sentiment can often hold people back from living the life that they have always strived for.
A constant feeling of shame also hinders accomplishing both short term and long term goals.
For people who are rebuilding their sober lives, it is important to overcome this projection and focus on living a happy and healthy life.
This can be done by creating and working toward life goals, ignoring judgement from others, and creating a healthy mentality when it comes to viewing yourself and your past. Here is how you can conquer shame and live your best life.
Remember How Far You’ve Come
Going through an alcohol or drug detox is no easy feat, and it is important to remember that. As a recovering addict you have put in real effort to better yourself, which is a very admirable trait.
Addiction may have been a part of your life once, but that is no longer the case.
Remembering how far you have come can help you to overcome shame and get more proud and excited about your new sober life.
“Remembering how far you have come since the beginning of your addiction and keeping in mind that it is normal for everyone to make mistakes will increase self esteem as well.”, says Mat Gorman, CEO at Briarwood Detox Center.
Try To Ignore Judgement From Others
Sometimes people can be very judgemental of others, and sadly this often includes judgement to those in addiction treatment and recovery.
Although it may seem to be easier said than done, it is important to distance yourself from these kinds of people and try to ignore any negative comments about your past.
This also includes people who hold any negative stereotypes about recovering addicts, because they are often both harmful and untrue.
Avoiding having these judgements and negative stereotypes get to you will increase your self esteem and help you be able to live your best life.
Live The Life That You Have Always Dreamed Of
Addiction treatment is all about making life improvements. This includes making the necessary changes toward leading a healthier, happier, and more productive life.
Addiction recovery is the perfect time to do things that you have always wanted to do, and you will likely feel much better once you start.
Embarking on a new education or career path, making healthy lifestyle changes, and even just starting a new hobby can be just the change that you need to increase self esteem and conquer feelings of shame. It will make you feel more productive as well.
Focus On Your Goals
Making these life changes will likely have you making both short term and long term goals as well.
Not only can making and achieving these goals help you progress with your plans, but it also increases self esteem and makes you feel more productive.
In addition to this, having aspirations to work toward helps to keep the mind off troubling feelings like shame.
Always keeping yourself busy can also make ignoring judgements and stereotypes or distancing yourself from toxic people easier as well. It is also a great way to create a life for yourself that you are excited about living everyday.
Remember That People Grow and Change
It is important to remember that everyone changes and grows throughout their life, and you are no exception.
All people make mistakes, but it is crucial to have a good mindset about this. Although it is true that everyone makes mistakes, we shouldn’t have these mistakes create our perception on who someone is.
Instead we should focus on what they do to correct these mistakes, and how they grow as people.
Having this mentality can help you look at others with more respect while also increasing your self esteem. Although creating a potentially new mindset might take a while, you will definitely thank yourself for it later.
Experiencing shame is often an unfortunate reality for many recovering addicts. However, there are ways that people in addiction recovery can conquer this feeling.
The first is to create a healthy mindset for yourself. You can do this by remembering how far you have come to improve your life and that everyone makes mistakes.
Instead of judging a person on the mistakes that they have made, you should focus on the changes that they have made to repair these mistakes.
Having a healthy mentality about yourself will help with conquering shame over time. The next thing that you can do to overcome shame is to try and ignore any negative judgements and stereotypes towards recovering addicts from others.
Instead you should focus on the life improvements that you have made and the goals that you are working towards. Doing these things will have you living your best life before you know it.