Finding Purpose During Your Addiction Recovery Journey
Purpose. It’s one of those words that seems to spark a little anxiety in a lot of people. The concept is deliberately ambiguous allowing it to work under countless distinct conditions, but that’s also what makes it such a hard thing to grasp. Is your purpose building cabinets or working with your hands? Are you an astronaut or an explorer? You’re the only one with the answers because you’re the only person asking specific questions.
One thing is certain, purpose gives you direction. Don’t expect to wake up one morning knowing exactly what it is you want to do, it doesn’t work like that, it’s not a map. The purpose is more like a compass, guiding you in the direction of meaningful existence. For the alcohol and drug addicts in recovery, direction is a lifesaver.
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Why Finding Your Purpose Matters
There’s nothing New Age or hippy-dippy about finding your purpose. We’ve all searched for it at one time or another. Children start with a general education in hopes that one or two subject areas grab their attention and they go on to pursue a career in the appropriate field. Kids gravitate towards what interests them, and if something even better comes along, they just go with it and make the switch. Finding your purpose during the recovery process involves going on a similar journey of discovery.
Once you’ve completed the drug detox program and begun digging deep in behavioral therapy, questions like is this all there is, or, what’s waiting for me back home, start to bubble up, demanding attention. Drug abuse gave itself priority over the full range of your interests, obliterating every shred of joy they’d previously brought and leaving huge empty voids. Fill these voids with new, healthy, life-affirming activities and you’ll never hear the echoes of substance abuse trying to call you back.
Having purpose simply means being goal-driven. If you’re still living in a rehab center, setting attainable goals for yourself each day keeps you firmly rooted in the treatment methods provided by your recovery center. The freedom that comes after leaving your treatment facility, whether that’s back to your old life or checking into a sober living home, is full of pitfalls. Purpose gives freedom the necessary structure to keep you on track and prevent relapse.
How To Find Purpose Through Your Recovery
Finding purpose takes awareness of who you are, what you want, what you have, your strengths, and your limits, but most of all, it takes an open mind. Drug and alcohol addiction makes you supremely selfish and self-absorbed. In order to turn that around, start by practicing awareness in distinct categories.
If your life is spent seeking validation from the people around you, stop. Even if making others happy is your true purpose, you need something genuine to give before anyone will want it. Ask yourself, what makes me happy, why aren’t I doing more of it, how can I share this with people I love, and do I even want to share it with anyone at all? If it’s something from your past, rekindle that passion, or if you have no idea, make a list of things that sound interesting and try them one by one.
Look around you, what’s good about your life? Write down everything that comes to mind. Go over your list each morning and meditate on how and why these things make your life better. Try to identify any response during this practice. It could be a specific thought that pops into your head, a memory, or a physical sensation. Gratitude and meditation are powerful tools for finding your purpose, and each one of those reactions is like a guidepost pointing you in the right direction.
There are no hard and fast rules on how long it should take, or what qualifies as a purpose, nothing like that. Don’t give up if it feels like nothing speaks to you. Your efforts aren’t wasted because they failed to answer your needs. Knowing what doesn’t work for you is just as valuable as knowing what does.
Start Your Recovery with Muse Treatment Center Los Angeles
Muse Treatment has the expertise and experience to help you find a new purpose. Our treatment options include addiction and dual diagnosis treatment programs, while a certified team of addiction specialists guides you through the recovery process. The core set of addiction treatments at Muse, drug or alcohol detox, inpatient rehab, intensive outpatient, and sober living programs come with varying levels of care and are customized to help you overcome drug addiction.
Would you like to learn more about the treatment programs available at our Muse Treatment Center? Please give us a call at (800) 426-1818 to discuss addictive synthetic drugs and how to overcome addiction in a luxury rehab center.