Think of addiction as a huge hole in the ground. You started your descent with caution and ease. Then you stumbled a few times.
Eventually, you just rolled all the way to the bottom. Lost in dark pit of isolation.
After months or years of sitting in the darkest depths of this void, you dust yourself off. It’s time to climb out of this hole. It’s time to take your life back.
Just like addiction, there are stages of addiction recovery. With each stage, you’re reaching and clawing your way out of your darkest hour. Here’s what you can expect.
The Stages of Addiction Recovery
This is you walking around in the dirt. You haven’t realized where you are or how bad your situation is.
You have yet to consider that your life is now completely controlled by your addiction. You feel like you’re in control. Like you can stop whenever you want.
You admit it. You’re an addict. Unfortunately, this is the stage where people get depressed. They may think there’s no hope for them.
You think, “Maybe someday.”
You hope you don’t OD or get arrested. You’ve probably had some close calls. But your only real action right now is inaction.
As far as the hole. You’re reaching. However, you’re not putting in the effort it’s going to take to get you out.
But you know where you are and how you got here.
As we continue down the list of the stages of addiction recovery, we’re now at the point where the addict is thinking about the path to recovery. You realize your current path is self-destructive and will result in either incarceration or fatality.
You will start to or are already talking to family members or friends about the possibility of “getting better”. You may try switching up drugs of choice or reducing your intake.
You dig your fingers in the earth walls surrounding you. Maybe you find a root or a rock. And you start to lift yourself up…
You take your first step into a detox or inpatient facility. Once the withdrawal symptoms begin to subside, the period of your life you want to forget is now the clearest it has ever been.
You remember the things you did to get high. You remember the people you hurt. The relationships you destroyed.
You make a promise to yourself to get better. You want to make amends and start your life over again.
You’re climbing pretty hard now. You can see the light at the top. Your friends and family are waiting for you and cheering you on.
This is the most important part of recovery. You’re no longer in a facility. You’re out on your own and living life.
However, don’t forget you are still climbing. One wrong move and you’ll fall back to the bottom. But that’s what makes you strong.
Failure isn’t an option for you anymore, is it? You know what failure is. You know what it’s like to be at the bottom of that hole and you’re determined not to go back.
Once you’ve completed all of the stages of addiction recovery, you’re mostly free. Every day is filled with choices and you need to be the one to make the proper decisions. We encourage you to pass your life changing experience on to others.