Why Don’t We Change Immediately?
It’s so easy to make excuses and stay the same! It’s actually kind of horrifying how quick our brains produce a handful of seemingly brilliant reasons for why we can’t do something. “It’ll be too hard, it’ll take too long, what if it’s not worth it? I’m already doing this, this, and that” and so on, ad infinitum.
As addicts and alcoholics, we’re used to extremes. We’re used to the easy way out, the quick solution, instant gratification, and cutting corners in such a way that it looks like we’re working hard, but really we’re coasting.
If you’ve found a solution in a twelve-step fellowship to an addiction that would have eventually killed you…what’s next? You’ve already made some really big changes, but are there more?
The answer to the above question is a resounding YES!
For the real addict, substances are just a symptom of a much larger problem. For those who come into recovery with the gift of desperation, it’s clear early on that merely sobering up won’t cut it. Attending a women’s treatment center, or any treatment center, gives us distance from the immediate problem, but real and lasting change is a richer, fuller, lifelong experience.
What does that even mean? It means stop making excuses, stop believing you have all the answers, and start listening to people who have been where you’ve been! Going through steps is, for many of us in recovery, the first thing we’ve seen through from start to finish. It’s a great start, but what about those character defects? What about those other behaviors we just don’t want to change?
Change comes quickly at times and slowly at others. The idea isn’t to finish and be done – the bigger picture is to recognize that change is possible and that progress is a lifelong endeavor.
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As with all things, seeking change is best in balance. A lot of big changes happen right away in sobriety. Besides the obvious, other changes that don’t need to be waited on: who you hang out with, where you spend your time, and daily habits that’ve been lost while using.
What’s so amazing about change is that it’s most often these small, daily things that end up reshaping our lives. Little habits, little changes in routine, are what keep us sober in the long run. Trust me, there’s no reason to wait.
As with almost everything in recovery, the only way to find the true value of what you hear over and over is to try it yourself. Try it repeatedly and see what happens. Waking up fifteen minutes earlier to have a quiet moment to contemplate your day can be more meaningful than you imagine. As with most of the good stuff, real change is in the details, the daily things we do that remind us we are capable of so much more than we know!