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What Are You Powerless Over?

worry about powerlessness

When you first get sober, you learn that you are powerless over your addiction and cannot safely use drugs or alcohol. But that is not the extent of what you are powerless over. Of course, you’re powerless over drugs and alcohol, but even if you are a control freak, many things in your life are out of your control. And that’s okay! Admitting you are powerless is the first step to reclaiming your life.

Powerlessness isn’t the same as being weak. Many people find it freeing when they learn that they are powerless over their addiction. However, by admitting you can’t, all on your own, stop drinking or using drugs, you’re using the tiny bit of power you have to get help.

You’re Powerless Over People, Too

Not only are you powerless over your addiction, but you’re also powerless over other people. Yes, your actions affect people, but you don’t control anyone but yourself. (And you shouldn’t be trying to!) You can control what you say, but you cannot control how somebody else reacts to it. Admitting you are powerless over other people can free up many of your thoughts. You can’t fix anyone but yourself. In recovery, that’s your focus.

You’re powerless over your mother, brother, father, sister, the man who works at the grocery store, your sponsor, your ex-girlfriend, and everyone else. The only thing you have power over is how you treat them. But, unfortunately, you cannot control how they react to that treatment.

Powerless Over Places and Things

Just like you are powerless over your addiction, you also have no power over other places and things. You only control how you act or react to those places or things.

You can’t stop the open-air drug market from existing, but you can stop driving by there on your way home. You can’t control if your car battery dies suddenly, but you can call somebody to fix it for you. You can’t stop the grocery store from selling beer, but you can skip that aisle or even send a gig worker to get your food.

Powerlessness is just another fact of life. When you accept that you are powerless, you may find that you feel a little more safe and free in the world. Not only are you powerless, but you’re also not in charge! That means you are only responsible for the things you do and say.

Staying Connected In Sober Living

Sober living is an excellent opportunity for many people to learn to navigate the world in recovery. In addition, you’ll have a sense of structure and community with other people who have the same goals as you do. Learn more about how sober living can enhance your recovery by calling us at 760-216-2077.

Do you have trouble accepting yourself? Many people in recovery get sober and begin to have feelings about their past and the present. When you were drinking or using substances, you probably did things that you feel guilty about. You weren’t at your best when you were high. You may have done some ugly things or said things you didn’t mean. However, when you get sober, you’re beginning the process of leaving that person behind one day at a time. Accepting yourself as you are at this moment can help you start to focus on healing and continuing your recovery one day at a time.

Treatment and 12-step programs emphasize progress, not perfection. No one will ever be able to rid themselves of character flaws. But learning and growing are a part of life. Through recovery, you can continue to challenge yourself to live a better and more fulfilling life.

What is Self-Acceptance?

Self-acceptance means you accept yourself for who you are, flaws and all. This can be hard for people when they first get sober. Everyone who gets sober carries some pain from their old lifestyle. As you stay sober for some time, you’ll start to recognize that some of your behavior doesn’t suit you. For example, maybe you’re quick to get angry or feel like you let others walk all over you. You may feel shame when you act out in old behaviors.

Everyone has character flaws that they need to work on. But, these can’t be the focus of your life if you’re going to enjoy your recovery! Rather than “beat yourself up” when you make a mistake, accept responsibility and try to do better next time. You’re only human. Forgive yourself for making a mistake. This can help go a long way toward healing and growth.

Beginning to Accept Yourself

Accepting the fact that you’ll never be perfect can lift a weight off of your shoulders. You’re a human being, after all, just like everyone else. Humans all have flaws and things they need to work on in life.

Here are some ways to begin accepting yourself:

You can accept yourself and your weaknesses and still work to change. Recovery is a journey, not a destination.

A bit of self-acceptance will help you stay humble along the way. You know you’re not perfect, but you can still strive for progress. And that's okay!

Sober Living Options

Are you looking for a sober living home in the San Diego area? We offer a great environment with both community and structure to help you maintain your recovery as you live life on its terms. Give us a call at 760-216-2077 to learn more about how we can help!

Acceptance is one of the most essential principles of 12-step recovery. When you first get sober, you do so as you accept that you have a problem. Once you admit you have a problem with alcohol or drugs, you must also accept that you need help.

Throughout early recovery, you’ll learn there are many things you need to learn to accept. Acceptance isn’t an action – it’s a process. As you grow and change in recovery, you’ll discover that it can be a daily struggle. There are many things out of our control that we must accept, and it can be challenging! This is why you’ll continue to work the 12-steps even after you’ve been sober a few years.

Questions About Acceptance

You may think that you’ve already mastered acceptance. Acceptance, however, isn’t something you can master. It’s something that will crop up throughout your life as a human being.

If you’re in early recovery, you might still be grappling with the idea of acceptance. That’s a normal part of the process of getting sober. The good news is that you can take things a day at a time.

Here are some questions you can use to explore the idea of acceptance. You can write the answers to these questions in a journal, meditate about them, or simply ask yourself the questions and answer as you read.

  1. What is the dictionary definition of acceptance?
  2. What flaws do you have? Do you accept them? Do you think you can accept something and work to change it at the same time?
  3. Who was the first person outside of your family to accept you for who you are?
  4. Do you find it easy or hard to accept other peoples’ flaws?
  5. Have you ever tried to make somebody change when they weren’t willing?
  6. What places are triggers for you using? Have you accepted you are powerless over these places?
  7. When you are in a relationship, do you accept the person’s flaws? Have you ever tried to change somebody else?
  8. When you were a teenager, did you accept your looks? Or did you think that changing them would make you happier?
  9. Have you ever had a relative or friend that seemed to accept you and love you no matter what?
  10. What does it mean to you to accept that you are powerless over your addiction?
  11. Which people in your “old life” are you powerless over?
  12. Was admitting you are powerless over others scary?
  13. What is the hardest thing to accept in your life today?
  14. Have you learned to turn things over, or are you at a point where you still have to work on acceptance?
  15. What things do you accept today that you didn’t accept six months ago? What did it take to start accepting them?

Recovery Housing Can Help

During the era of COVID-19, many people are feeling isolated. It’s easy to understand why. If you or a loved one is looking for stability and continuity after treatment, consider sober housing. We offer a family-like atmosphere that allows for growth and stability. We are still taking clients while we use COVID-19 safety procedures. Please get in touch at 760-216-2077 to learn more about your options.

What are you to get the most out of recovery right now? It may seem like a strange question given the era of COVID-19 and the many challenges everyone may face in the next few months. Indeed, it has been a difficult couple of weeks for many people across America. There are many challenges ahead for all of us. While it seems like a time of uncertainty, one thing for sure is that a lot of people have had to learn to adapt quickly to a new way of life. Changing is how we, as human beings, cope with difficulties and things we have no power over.

Accepting the Here and Now

You’re not alone in thinking that it’s a problematic era we have all been thrust into. There's a lot of bad news going on. It’s okay to be angry, frightened, or sad. No one is immune to feeling vulnerable. This is what being human, and feeling your feelings, is all about.

Staying sober is a journey. There is no destination, and nobody can say for sure what is around the corner. Life is the same way. You can only accept your feelings, acknowledge them, and continue to trudge on with the help of others.

Tools to Get You Through the Day

There are plenty of tools to help you strengthen your recovery and stay focused on today. In times like we’re going through today, it’s more important than ever to take life a day at a time.

Here are some ideas to help you stay centered at home:

Remember, this too shall pass. It can be challenging to sit still or walk through fear. Staying sober is still your most important priority. Learning to do so will help you grow and adapt in life. Don’t suffer in silence; call your sponsor or a friend when you’re feeling low.

Consider Sober Housing

Many people find that after treatment, they’re not ready to be out on their own. Sober housing is a great way to land on your feet and begin building a new future. Learn more about how it works and why it benefits you by contacting us at 760-216-2077.

Letting go is one topic that most people who live with an addiction disorder have a problem with. In recovery, you’re only responsible for our actions and reactions. That doesn’t stop people from “getting in their head” and obsessing about situations, people, and problems that they can’t fix. Letting go is hard. Whether it’s a situation in the past that haunts you or a relationship that’s gone wrong, it can be painful and difficult to cope with.

There are, however, a few exercises to try.

Creating a “Letting Go” Box

Have you heard of a “letting go box”? The idea behind it is simple. Find a wood box or jewelry box when you’re out and about. It should be small and attractive to you, but large enough that it can hold small pieces of paper.

You can also buy a plain wood box decorate it yourself, or if you have children, get them to paint it for you. The important part is that the box calls to you or inspires you in some way. This box will house your problems and issues and take care of them for you during the day.

Turning Over Your Feelings and Frustrations

When you’re having trouble letting go of something that’s bothering you, it’s time to turn it over to your box. Write down what’s troubling you on a piece of paper. Think about the issue and all the emotions related to it. Let yourself feel them. Take the piece of paper, fold it in half, and turn it over to the box.

If you have a higher power, you can also call this box “the God box” – and take time to say a little prayer about the issue. Then fold it and put it away in your box.  Think of the box as an armory that protects the things you’ve turned over to it until you’re ready to cope with them again.

What if the Issue Comes Back During the Day?

If the issue comes back again, remember that it’s inside the box. For example, if your boss has been driving you crazy by micromanaging you, turn it over and let it go. Go to sleep. The next day, if he does something to annoy you again, remember it’s vaulted in that box. You can turn it over again when you get home. Just do a good job and focus on yourself today.

Instead of brooding about the issue, go home and take the paper out of the box. Think about it, allow yourself a maximum of five minutes to think about it, and physically turn it back over to your box again.

You can turn over things as many times as you want. The act of turning things over, even if they’re just locked in a special box, can be powerful. You may find yourself more able to concentrate on things during the day.

Sober Housing Can Help You

Are you interested in a safe, comfortable living situation once you’re out of treatment and back on your feet? Sober homes offer you a unique chance to learn to live life on life’s terms. Live in a place focused on recovery while doing aftercare, getting a job, or planning your next steps in life. Call us to learn more about your option at 760-216-2077.

Do you have a lot of expectations in life? Many people who struggle with addiction come up with a great list of goals they expect to reach in recovery. Some of these goals may be tangible and easy to work on and achieve. For example, learning to wake up at six in the morning is an immediate goal that you might make so you can keep on schedule. But another goal you have, such as re-establishing a relationship with a family member, may take time to achieve. For some people, these bridges are burned and won't happen any time soon. It may be hard to accept that your action doesn’t have an immediate payout. But it’s merely a fact of life – many things take time to achieve.

You didn’t become addicted in one day. Do you really believe that you can change your whole life in one day? That’s a huge expectation that you’ve placed on yourself. It’s time to learn how to give yourself a break.

Accepting Your Life As It Is

In recovery, you’re probably learning a lot about acceptance. Accepting that your life is what it is right now. You can help you learn to slow down and take one day at a time.

When you were a kid, you probably wanted Santa and all of your relatives to give you something you thought was really cool. But for whatever reason, not one person got you that toy. Maybe you got some socks and smaller, less fancy toys. You probably accepted those gifts, anyway, if you were a polite kid. After all, a gift is a gift.

Acceptance doesn’t mean that you’re settling for something less than you want. It means you’re accepting what the world has to give. This is something you can do just for the present. Acceptance can give you a lot of peace.

Working Towards Goals

Acceptance is a way to a more peaceful way of life. After a time, it will be easier to realize that you’ve done what you can, and that’s all you can do. The only thing you have control over is your actions and reactions. However, you can become more mindful of how your personal actions can affect others and treat people with kindness.

Working on goals that you’re not sure that you will achieve requires a leap of faith. But everyone in life has failures and successes. That’s how we learn and grow. In recovery, you’ll learn to accept that life isn’t perfect, and things won’t always go in your favor. But putting in the work to change yourself is still worth it because it’s bettering you. Facing challenges, living your life, and taking action help you grow.

You can’t force your mother to forgive you or your children to want to spend time with you if your relationship is damaged. Getting clean or sober for a certain amount of time doesn’t make you a perfect person. Healing takes time. Now it’s time to work on yourself and take action to become a better person. If you’re not sure what will help you achieve your goals, ask your sponsor or others who have been in similar situations.

A Day at a Time

Goals can be daunting if you try to fix them all at once. Taking life a day at a time – with daily action towards your goals – will help you keep your focus. Recovery is a journey, not a destination.

Working the steps and taking suggestions will help you make changes in your life. You’ll begin to heal your own issues, and become a better person.

Everyone in recovery has dreams and goals, but accepting your life as it is, and letting go of expectations can help you grow and live a more peaceful life. You deserve peace! So give yourself a chance and take it a day at a time.

Consider Sober Living

After treatment, transitioning to the “real world” can be stressful. Many people find that sober housing offers them the support and structure they need to stay focused on their recovery. Learn more about our inspiring living program and joining our community by calling us at 760-216-2077.

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