Rother House Medical Centre
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Heath Lodge Clinic
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B93 9LW

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Chris Sharpe is also an associate of Twin Rivers Rehab in South Africa

Twin Rivers in South Africa


Wellbeing: Addiction Recovery Article by Chris Sharpe

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Wellbeing by Chris SharpeThe Old-Timer Called, Wellbeing:

There is little doubt in my mind that the commonly used term, ‘Spirituality or Spiritual Programme’ can be extremely off-putting when delivered to the recovering addict early on in the context of his or her therapy programme, yet if time is taken to define and tailor it correctly, spirituality can and should become the mainstay of any continued, quality, recovery plan.

I once asked a long term recovering alcoholic what his definition of spirituality was. Without pause or hesitation he replied, ‘Spirituality is the continuous feeling of wellbeing brought about by right and honest living.’

In these difficult and challenging times in which we live wouldn’t it be good to live an incredible life brim full of hope, energy, joy and promise, leading to what the old-timer so wisely called, wellbeing. But the question remains; how do we find such a hope filled state of mind and once found how on earth do we hold on to it?

This becomes one of the many tasks of the treatment centre or the addiction counsellor, to somehow assist the newly recovering addict in installing the emotional strength to believe that he can make a difference by enduring through difficult times.

There are many strategies available to put forward to an inexperienced client seeking that illusive state of wellbeing, strategies such as finding hope. It’s so easy to lose hope during the initial days of recovery when all around you is seen in a new and unfamiliar light or when you possibly have a bad day and maybe feeling emotionally lost, lonely or without any real sense of progress. Hope can initially be found by accepting that the odd step backwards is part of life and then believing that things will always get better. The evidence is that they always do. Hope comes by keeping an honest focus on your own recovery, by not allowing allow yourself to overlook the true joy that sobriety can bring, even when the people around you may seem to be stuck in their own negativity. Try not to lose perspective. Remember, a bad day sober is always better than a good day drunk!

Another strategy is to maintain positive and achievable goals and put them down in a plan. An addict in early recovery will certainly lose hope if he has no plan. But plans must always be flexible, your goal needs to be something that you can work towards but change or alter if required, because at any time throughout your ongoing sobriety, you will most certainly uncover new thoughts or new actions that possibly make it easier to direct your focus in achieving your plan. In turn, achievement brings hope and we deserve hope as much as we deserve to have dreams. So even when times are not so good, never give up on your dreams. Tell yourself often, that you deserve them.

Hold on to the fact that given time and the right sort of guidance, these basic strategies will go on to form the principles of that new and exciting life that the old-timer called, Wellbeing. It does exist and is available to those who are prepared to accept the help and put in the right action. Why don’t you give it a try?

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