Admitting you need help for your drug or alcohol misuse disorder and entering a treatment facility can feel intimidating. Initially, the path forward may be unclear, and you could be feeling less-than-optimistic about what your future brings. Your fears can accumulate and put your newfound sobriety at risk.
But fear doesn’t have to be part of your recovery journey if you take precautions not only to understand what’s standing in the way of your progress, but also to learn healthy coping mechanisms for rising above these potential obstacles. Here are three fears that hold you back in recovery, and how to manage them.
1. Fear of Loneliness
Many recovering addicts have been drinking or using for so long that their identity is tangled up in substance misuse. The thought of being alone – and drug-free – in a new environment may fill you with dread. However, it’s crucial to keep in mind that rehab does not equal solitary confinement. On the contrary, if you choose a holistic treatment program, you can expect to participate in activities like group therapy and excursions that encourage you to open up and make new friends.
But what happens when you return home from rehab? Won’t you feel more isolated than ever when you are back in familiar surroundings and unable to return to the people, places and things you once enjoyed for fear of triggering a relapse? Many recovery experts recommend finding an in-person or online support group to supplement the skills and techniques you learned during inpatient rehab.
2. Fear of Failure
Worrying about failing is one of the most natural human emotions. Whether you’re concerned you won’t have what it takes to stick to your path of sobriety, or you envision people will think less of you once they learn that you are a recovering addict, the list of potential “failures” that could keep you up at night varies widely depending on your personality and experiences.
To address these fears that hold you back in recovery, step back and reassess what failure means to you. Don’t listen to that little voice telling you that you’ll never make it. Congratulate yourself for every accomplishment, no matter how small it might seem. You will only gain more self-confidence and defeat your fear of failure by never giving up.
3. Fear of Success
Ironically, fearing success is almost as common as dreading failures. How will you know you’ve succeeded at something? Do you struggle to take credit for the things you’ve achieved? Success isn’t luck, and it isn’t random – it’s the result of hard work and sacrifice. In other words, your success will come when you put the time and effort into it.
Overcoming your fear of success involves learning how to recognize and avoid the self-destructive tendencies that are common among people living with addictive disorders. When you feel this fear beginning to stir inside you, quell it by repeating to yourself that you not only deserve to succeed, but you deserve to be happy.
Don’t Let the Fear Win
Nobody ever said living in sobriety would be easy, but you shouldn’t hesitate to let go of fears and other obstacles that might be preventing you from living up to your full, joyous potential. Remember, committing to recovery means embracing all the experiences you’ll encounter along the way, including the triumphs and setbacks alike. All those factors become colorful threads in the tapestry of your life.
At Vista Taos, we believe your addiction does not define you. Here on our accredited New Mexico recovery campus, you’ll learn how to move through the fears that hold you back, and learn to become a more complete person in the process. Contact us to get started.