Words can often serve as key motivators for individuals and families seeking positive change. Many who have embarked on a journey to sobriety have proclaimed how important positive recovery words are to the process. Everyone comes from a vastly different background and every situation, life story, struggle, and hardship is unique. Words, believe it or not, can make an incredible difference in overcoming difficult situations.
Substance abuse recovery often begins with a belief that there’s life beyond the disease of addiction. Our perception and self-control is often built around the words we use to define aspirations, goals, emotions, and even events that may not feel so uplifting. Positive affirmations, or positive recovery words, can be a helpful tool to reflect on our deepest desires. They can also be used to build on our emotional, mental, and physical strength. I can do this, while a seemingly simple statement can make a world of difference to someone who continually faces challenges during addiction treatment. Overcoming a drug addiction isn’t easy. Engaging in practices that change a habitual way of thinking, such as keeping a gratitude journey or learning mindfulness meditation, has been shown to improve life both mentally and physically.
Self-affirmations and recovery mantras give you the opportunity to remind yourself that, no matter how stressful your situation gets, you’re headed in the right direction. Below we’re reviewing some of the most powerful positive recovery words ideal for those moving through the process of Colorado addiction treatment.
What are Positive Affirmations?
While words cannot change reality, they have been proven to change how people perceive reality. According an article published in Psychology Today, “words create filters through which people view the world around them.” By reinforcing a positive belief over a period of time individuals may experience a lasting result in thinking more clearly and believing that which they knew to be impossible. In this way, positive affirmations are meant to engage the mind with a newly perceived notion that addiction recovery is not only possible, it’s well deserved. What qualifies as positive affirmations?
Affirmations are statements that are dynamic and practical, as opposed to wishful thinking. The reality of addiction isn’t limited to an individual’s loss of control over using substances that are ultimately harmful to their well being. Beyond that, addiction often undermines self-confidence and, as a result, individuals suffering through the disease of addiction may also experience anxiety, depression, self-doubt, shame, and other co-occurring mental health disorders. These emotions can trigger a desire to use, so having a positive mantra to reinforce the idea that overcoming addiction can eliminate triggers and help individuals to cope through the pull of substance abuse. By giving yourself an optimistic statement to repeat when you start feeling down, you’ll be more likely to overcome negative thoughts. This can enable you to start taking control of your emotions and making positive changes in your life.
Over time, using affirmations can greatly improve your self-esteem. Telling yourself, I’m capable of achieving my goals, instead of I’m a loser who can’t do anything will help you to generate a more optimistic view of yourself. With a heightened sense of self-esteem, you’ll find that you slowly become more confident, more productive and less inclined to relapse on drugs.
How Do I Choose a Mantra?
Your affirmation can be any number of things. The sky is the limit. It can be as broad as I can do this or as specific as I’m working hard to get the job I want. As long as it motivates and reassures you, positive recovery words are boundless. In a book entitled Words Can Change Your Brain, authors Andrew Newberg, M.D. and Mark Robert Waldman, discuss the importance of words having a lasting impact. They cite that “a single word has the power to influence the expression of genes that regulate physical and emotional stress.”
Your affirmation should ideally be something that you can use for a long period of time that is suitable for a wide range of situations. You want something that you can repeat to yourself on a daily basis, if not hourly basis so that it becomes embedded in your thought process and changes the way you think. So, while something like I will get this job is a great short-term affirmation that will help you nail that interview, you’ll want to have a few long-term mantras on hand, as well.
10 Inspirational Recovery Affirmations to Help Get You Started
The road to recovery is never without obstacle. Many will face challenges and triggers that seek to bring you down and succumb to relapse. With positive words of affirmation, you can more easily remember that your life is worth the fight against substance abuse. You also don’t have to face it alone. AspenRidge Recovery centers have been providing individuals and families with experienced, supportive care at a critical time. For more information on our substance abuse programs give us a call at 855-281-5588 any day, 24/7.
1. I deserve great things.
Stop telling yourself that you don’t deserve a good life. You absolutely do.
The fact that you’ve struggled with addiction doesn’t disqualify you from having goals. It also doesn’t make you unworthy of achieving those goals. You still deserve to have the things you want and reminding yourself of that will motivate you to work harder to get them.
2. I can and I will.
Don’t ever forget that you’re capable, powerful, and strong. Positive recovery words should incorporate the aspects of yourself that are often forgotten. Find instances when you can reaffirm that a world of possibilities is limitless.
This one can be applied to almost any goal you have in your life—from getting into college to being a better parent. It’s important to remind yourself not only that you can do something, but that you are going to do it. Reminding yourself that you can and will achieve your goals will enable you to start taking steps toward doing so. Create a vision for yourself that will become your reality.
3. I will be a better me.
Envision the best version of yourself and strive to become that.
“A better me” means something different for all of us. Once you figure out what that term means to you, don’t let anything stop you from pursuing it. You may want to start simple. Choose one aspect of your personality that you want to change and list some actionable steps you can take toward changing it. Repeating the affirmation to yourself every day will remind you to take those steps. Committing to self-improvement will be good for your mental health, especially as you commit yourself to finding a life away from substance abuse.
4. I’m becoming a better version of myself every day.
Each day that you go without drinking or using drugs, you’re working toward maximizing your potential as a person.
This is a particularly helpful anti-relapse/non-drinking affirmation. When you first get out of rehab, after all, the temptation to go right back to using is a strong one. By reminding yourself that you may the choice to get clean for a reason and that it’s having a positive effect on your life, you’ll be far less likely to slip up.
5. I like the person I’m becoming.
Don’t worry about the opinions of other people. The only thing that matters is that you like the person you’re evolving into.
If you’ve lived as a drug addict or alcoholic for years, it’s possible that there are people in your life who aren’t happy to see you get sober. They may be jealous of your newfound sobriety and want to see you fail. It’s important that you discard those opinions and remind yourself that you’re making the right decisions. Positive recovery words begin with self love and acceptance of self.
6. All of my problems can be solved.
There is no challenge that you can’t overcome. You’re a strong person who is capable of dealing with problems as they arise.
This affirmation is especially useful for addicts, whose knee-jerk reaction to adversity might be to relapse on drugs. If you remind yourself that you don’t need drugs or alcohol to fix your problems (and that drugs or alcohol never fixed any problems, anyway), you’ll be in a much better position to deal with the challenges that life throws at you.
7. I keep going because I am on the right path.
Post-addiction life can be tough. Remind yourself that you’re doing the right thing by staying sober.
For many people, the first few weeks after you get out of rehab aren’t easy. You might have to make amends for your past actions. You might not have a job. You might feel completely lost. No matter what the case is, remember that things will get better. As long as you keep making good choices, your life will improve over time.
8. My past has no power over me.
The things that happened in the past are meaningless now. It’s important to look toward the future.
Too often, life will deal a series of unfortunate events. Unfortunately, many find relief from difficult situations by self-medicating, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Your addiction might be rooted in traumatic memories that have led you to believe that substance abuse is the only method of coping. No matter what happened in your past, it doesn’t define you. The important thing is to remind yourself that you still have plenty of life to look forward to. These powerful positive recovery words will support you as you work to untangle yourself from the unrelenting grips of addiction. It also serves as a reminder of the importance of building resiliency as you find the tools to navigate mental health and self-love.
9. I am a strong individual.
You are not a weak person. You’ve survived at least one extremely difficult experience and you should be proud of yourself.
Whenever you feel self-doubt creeping on, remind yourself of exactly how strong you are. This should help you to overcome any negative or self-sabotaging emotions you might have.
10. I am in charge of my own life story.
There is always something you can do to shape your own future. Don’t let anyone or anything get in your way.
It’s easy to blame things outside of yourself for the outcome of your life. Sure, there are people and events that can get in your way. In reality, though, there are always things you can do to improve your situation. Remember that staying sober, setting goals and working hard will help you to create the life you want for yourself.
…Or You Can Always Make Up Your Own Mantra
Think in Positives, Not Negatives: Affirmations are what you will do, not what you won’t do. Positive affirmations will help you to retrain your brain to think optimistically instead of pessimistically.
For example, if you want to avoid spending time with people who drag you down, think about how that will make you a better person. Instead of saying “I won’t let other people drag me down” say “I only spend time with people who uplift me”.
Keep it Short (but Emotional) Your affirmation should fill you with emotion every time you say it. It should be short and memorable but also intense and passionate.
The AA daily affirmations are really good for this reason. Mantras like, “Live and let live” or “One day at a time”, convey some big ideas in very few words.
Think in the Present Tense: Your mantra shouldn’t include any dates or deadlines. A good affirmation would be “I am becoming a better person”, not “I will be a better person next year”.
The best recovery mantras are those that you can use to remind yourself that you’re always a work in progress but you’re making big steps toward living a better life.
Positive Recovery Words: Helping You Be Your Best Self
Recovering from addiction is a lifelong process. Even folks who’ve been sober for years still struggle with cravings. Affirmations are a great tool that can help you make it through the darkest times in life.
If you’re currently thinking about quitting or having trouble staying sober, give our recovery team and treatment centers in Colorado a call at 855-281-5588. A member of our staff will provide some support and help you to get back on the right path.