Alcohol is such a powerful depressant that it is capable of causing addiction and quick intoxication. Alcoholism is a condition that develops not based on how much a person drinks, but the reasons they drink. Studies show that people may be at a genetic risk for alcoholism. Learning from other alcoholics and using their experiences as a support system is the best way to stay sober and recover for good.
Alcoholics can learn a lot of lessons from each other. There are numerous ways to overcome alcoholism and remain sober for the remainder of your life, but it will take some effort. You will need to learn skills and seek help. Professional help and the support of recovered and recovering alcoholics is the best course of action. You will learn a lot of lessons from those who have been through it already, and you can use those lessons to improve your life.
1. Relapse Is Not Failure
Alcoholics get into the mindset that a relapse is automatically a failure. It’s the all-or-nothing attitude that causes them to go back down the road from which they came. Having a drink or two does not mean you are an alcoholic again. It means you caved due to vulnerabilities, and that is okay. Perfection isn’t required.
When something like this happens, it is important to step back and evaluate why it happened. If you were with friends and they pressured you, then you should tell your friends that alcohol is not something you ever want to have again. Explain to them how important sobriety is to you. If it was because of your mood, evaluate different strategies for regulating your mood. Use skills to break the cycle before it turns into a problem again.
Successfully sober people know that messing up is not the end. There will be times when you simply have to start anew. The difference between failing and being set back is that failures never start again. They stay down instead of getting back up. Even if you have to crawl back to your feet again, don’t give up if you relapse.
2. Changing Your Friends Is Important
Alcoholics who succeed at sobriety are the ones who change their friendship circles. Old friends will want to encourage old behaviors. They may tease you for not wanting to drink. You will lose common grounds with these types of friends anyway, and you won’t have the same kind of friendship. This can cause relapses to happen. It can be depressing to lose your friends and move on, but it is sometimes necessary for your health and well-being.
You can get a new support system by finding friends who are recovered alcoholics. These friends with experience will be able to guide you along the way. It’s important to have friends who understand. A friend who has never been an alcoholic can be an amazing support, but they will never fully understand what you go through or went through.
3. Care For Someone Other Than Yourself
Alcoholism makes people selfish. It’s not because you want to be selfish, but that’s simply what the disease does. It hurts those closest to you. This is why it is important to step out of your comfort zone. Do things that improve the life of someone else.
Volunteering is an excellent way to fulfill this step. Alcoholics who volunteer can find fulfillment and enjoyment in doing things that help others. This can be volunteering with Habitat for Humanity, at an animal shelter, or even at other clubs and groups in your area. It gives you a sense of worth. It makes you feel like you can be worthy to someone and useful.
Alcoholics get trapped in the cycle of worrying about their addiction. They worry about their next drink instead of the people they love. Focus on loving others with all of you. Be mindful in each moment in order to successfully overcome alcoholism.
When you care for others, you learn more than one lesson. You learn that you are an asset to the world, and you learn about the things other people go through. It makes life and overcoming alcoholism a little less frightening.
4. Don’t Try To Cure It
Alcoholism is a progressive disease that can be fatal. It leads to other chronic illnesses as well. Curing it on your own is a challenge, and you can’t do it alone with 100 percent success. It’s very important to take time to look for an alcohol rehab center to help you get sober and stay sober.
Other alcoholics who have successfully remained sober for years know how hard it is. They would recommend rehab as well. You will get the support, counseling, and complete attention you need to be healthy and happy again. It’s worth looking into and seeking out if you are serious about being sober.
5. Don’t Live In The Past
Living in the past isn’t just a problem for alcoholics. It’s a problem for millions of people who suffer from addictions and mental illnesses. Ruminating over things that happened a long time ago can only hurt you. You will torture yourself about a break up, a lost love, a ruined marriage, a deceased loved one, or a career that didn’t work out. The past is in the past for a reason, and it has to stay there.
Solving this problem may mean cutting off ties with people who have hurt you in the past. It may mean getting rid of objects that are a source of stress and rumination for you. You may need to change things about your life that you don’t want to change in order to live in the moment.
Other alcoholics who stay in the past end up incredibly ill or dying prematurely. The consequences of the past are likely over with. The present is the only time you can live in, and you should be making the most of it with what you have. This will allow you to live happily, be sober, and overcome the disease.