Remember, much of the addiction experience is learned. Eventually the person using learns from their personal experience that the continued use of drugs and alcohol is not worth the physical and mental illness and pain. It is not worth the total life destruction that is occurring. Even more damaging to the individual trying to leave addiction behind is the fact that the experience of addiction results in the development and reinforcement of distorted thinking patterns and dishonest communication with self and others. The dysfunctional thinking patterns and inadequate communication styles put the individual at a high risk for continued use and relapse.
The steps to sobriety sound deceptively simple. The individual recognizes there is a problem. The individual is supported by family and friends to attend detox. They stop using. Then the individual usually attends some form of ongoing counseling or rehab program. And, through these experiences, the successful individual learns the coping skills required to get on with their life and to prevent relapse.
In reality, there are many specific actions, small and large, that you will need to take to successfully change your life and prevent relapse. Also, changing the way you think and the way you behave will take time. The information in this book will help you to increase your knowledge, to take action and to change how you behave and even how you think. Recovery is just the start of your life-long journey of continuously learning new coping skills to achieve your life goals.