Did you know that more than 21 million Americans battle with some sort of addiction?
While we hear a lot about alcoholism and drug abuse, these are far from the only serious addictions. It’s also possible to be addicted to things like sex, shopping, exercising, social media, or even plastic surgery.
Whatever addiction you’re struggling with, be assured that you’re not alone. Overcoming addiction is possible–when you have the right mindset, the right tools, and the right support system.
In this post, we’ll reveal seven expert tips on how to overcome addiction–and regain control of your life.
1. Analyze Your Addiction
Before you can successfully overcome addiction, you must first understand it. Ask yourself questions like:
- What exactly am I addicted to?
- How did my addiction begin?
- When and how did I start to lose control?
- How is this addiction affecting my life–physically, emotionally, financially?
- What circumstances trigger my addiction or make my cravings worse?
Being honest with yourself might be difficult. You may not like a lot of the answers you write down. But although this first step is often the hardest, it’s also the most important.
2. Focus on the Positive
Now that you’ve got a better picture of your addiction, your next step is to focus on the positives of quitting.
Take a moment to picture how your life would be without this addiction dragging you down. You might envision things like:
- Improved physical and mental health
- Saving money
- Better relationships with family and friends
- Increased pride and self-worth
- A sense of true freedom
Your addiction has likely gotten you into a pattern of negative thinking. An important part of the recovery process is learning to turn that around.
3. Commit to Quitting
Now that you’re thinking positive thoughts, it’s time to come up with a personal reason to overcome your addiction. It could be something like:
- I’m quitting because I want to live life to the fullest.
- I’m quitting because I want to start saving money for the future.
- I’m quitting so I can become the spouse or parent my family deserves.
- I’m quitting so I can live long enough to meet my future grandchildren.
Whatever you choose, it must be something you care about very deeply. This underlying commitment will be your motivation to keep going when the recovery process gets tough.
4. Explore Treatment Options
Now that you’ve made the commitment in your heart, it’s time to take practical steps towards recovery.
Depending on the nature of your addiction, you might consider:
- Alcohol rehab program
- Drug addiction recovery program
- Detox treatment
- Professional counseling
- In-person or online support groups
- Medications to manage withdrawal symptoms or depression
There are many types of treatment options available, from full-time residential programs to sober living communities to outpatient treatment centers. Do your research to determine which type of treatment is best for you.
5. Get the Right Support
If you haven’t already, now’s the time to tell your family and friends that you’re committed to overcoming your addiction.
This may be difficult to do, especially if you’ve hurt or disappointed them in the past. But you need them on your side. They’ll become your greatest allies on the road to recovery.
You may also need to build a new social network during this time. What if the people you used to hang out with smoked, drank, used drugs, or otherwise encouraged your addiction? You won’t make much progress if you continue to socialize with them.
Where can you find new friends who will encourage you on your road to recovery? A 12-step program is a great place to start, as long as you commit to it and regularly attend meetings. You might also try joining a church or civic group, taking some classes, or volunteering in the community.
6. Learn Healthy Ways to Cope with Stress
Another vital part of overcoming addiction is finding healthier ways to cope with stress.
Your recovery program will likely give you some guidance, but you still need to do your part. At some point in the future, you’re going to feel stressed, lonely, angry, or anxious.
When those feelings strike, will you cave in to your addiction again? Or will you find a healthier way to fight it?
Here are some suggestions that might help:
- Take a brisk walk or go to the gym.
- Meditate or practice yoga.
- Spend time outdoors reconnecting with nature.
- Play with your kids or pets.
- Take a soothing bubble bath or soak in a hot tub.
- Listen to calming music.
- Read a book or watch a movie.
- Treat yourself to a massage or pedicure.
Different things work for different people. The key is finding what works for you.
7. Focus on a Healthy, Addiction-Free Lifestyle
The final step in the recovery process is centering your “new” life around healthy people and activities.
Remove any reminders of your addiction from your home, workplace, or other areas you visit regularly. Avoid people, places, and situations that you know could trigger a relapse. Surround yourself with people who support your commitment.
You also need to find healthy activities to fill your time. Have you ever wanted to learn a foreign language, play a musical instrument, or try a new sport? Now’s the perfect time to start.
You should also set some personal goals for yourself. They can be big or small, private or public–as long as they’re meaningful to you.
Above all, take care of your health during and after the recovery process. Eat right, get enough sleep, and exercise regularly.
And if you do have a few setbacks along the way, don’t be too hard on yourself. Just pick yourself up and keep trying.
How to Overcome Addiction: We Can Help
Now that you know how to overcome addiction, it’s time to take that all-important first step.
Focus on how your addiction is affecting your life and how it will change for the better by overcoming your addiction.
Then, read through our testimonials to see how our programs have helped individuals just like you to take control of their lives.
Ready to follow in their footsteps? Give us a call today at 405-217-0728 to make a confidential inquiry.