There are a number of ways you can move forward with long-term recovery and conquer any addiction issues you’re facing. One way people choose to do that is through a focus on spirituality in recovery. This approach may not be right for everyone. Given that the disease of addiction doesn’t effect individual the same way, recovery should really be about individual needs. For those who are interested in exploring their spirituality in recovery, there are options that assist.
Addiction recovery is a long road and one filled with setbacks, triggers, and feelings of despair. It takes time to focus on change and restoration, but it’s easy to lose sight during the process. While sobriety leads to positive growth, it’s not necessarily an upward trajectory. There are many relapse triggers that can occur that threaten long-term health. Defining relapse prevention strategies is one way to avoid these setbacks. However, for others, they may require a deeper connection with nature or defining their own personal path for growth and self-care. No matter how you define spirituality in recovery, it can help.
AspenRidge’s alcohol and drug treatment programs are customized to fit clients’ lifestyle, needs, and preferences. It can range from types of care settings–online or in-person–or taking a faith-based approach. Call us to get started (855)-281-5588.
What is Spirituality?
According to an article published by the University of Minnesota, spirituality is a broad concept. It’s interpretation leaves room for different perspectives, all of which are closely aligned with personal outlooks and beliefs. In general, spirituality includes a sense of connection to something bigger than self. It may also explore or search for meaning in life. In total, it’s a universal experience and something that is unique to us.
Well known sobriety group, Alcoholics Anonymous, is based in faith practices and is largely considered a spiritually led service. While this can be a turn-off for some, the concept of spirituality in recovery is not uncommon. After all, spirituality is more than religion and ideology. Most believe that it’s fluid and subject to viewpoints and relative to individual situations. For this reason, spirituality in recovery may provide an additional support system that can help offset relapsing on drugs.
Spirituality vs. Religion
It’s a common belief that religion and spirituality coincide. If you’re not a religious person, this can be a letdown. However there are some marked differences between spirituality and religion. For one, spirituality tends to be more of a personal journey, defined by the individual. It helps a certain person to connect with something bigger or broader in sense and meaning. It can be a connection to nature, the universe, or other living things. The connection is established by the person and carried out through faith-based practices.
Religion, on the other hand, is more of a structured way of defining a similar experience. It often involves more of a community and connection to others guided by traditions, rites, rituals, and organized programs or leadership.
Healing With Spirituality
Beginning the process of being clean and sober is challenging. For one, accepting personal responsibility can be next to impossible as well as incredibly painful. Practicing spirituality in recovery can help restore faith in self and provide strength to overcome guilt as it stems from past mistakes. Spiritual healing often involves factors such as:
- Forging new connections
- Overcoming shame
What happens when you get sober will vary for each person. But these hurdles are essential to facing and dealing with to help move through the journey of recovery. In some ways, spirituality in recovery starts with journaling regularly. Writing thoughts and feelings can be a cathartic way to understand the suppressed feelings that were often covered by alcohol and drug use. It can also help gain perspective on the changes occurring during recovery and celebrate smaller victories. Expressing these thoughts when in treatment programs that address dual diagnosis can be immensely helpful to long-term care.
Living with Addiction
It is easy to imagine that everyone knows how addiction feels. Unless a person has experienced it firsthand, however, it is impossible to understand the extent of the disease and what it can do to a person’s life. People may overstate that they’re acclimated to their daily morning coffee, so much so that going without makes for a terribly unpleasant morning. One might argue this is an addiction. But substance use disorder (SUD) is something much more grave.
Substance use disorder can make way for feelings of disconnection, shame, guilt, regret and a sense of unworthiness. On the other hand, recovery is highlighted by connections and empowerment. It provides care, support, love, understanding, and light through various methodology, all focused on the individual integrating with a whole. These principles lay the foundation of spirituality in recovery.
Interconnectivity and a sense of belonging steer individuals from the downward spiral often associated with alcohol and drug abuse. Addiction is a disease that flourishes in secret and isolation. It stands to reason that recovery should place emphasis on eliminating these factors.
Importance of Spirituality in Recovery
Spirituality helps remind us what it means to live in the moment and become mindful of self and our impact on our environment and those around us. In the context of recovery, spirituality can provide purpose, support, and inspiration.
While there’s some overlap, spirituality and religion are not the same. Religion incorporates rituals, beliefs, and practices, such as a praying, as they apply to God or multiple gods. Spirituality, on the other hand, is more of a personal search of discovery in self as it applies to a wide lens. It’s a search for purpose and meaning. These sets of ideals demonstrate the role spirituality plays in recovery.
The harsh reality of addiction is that it can strip away everything good in life. In its wake, an individual may be left with despair and hopelessness, which can fuel continued alcohol and drug use. Spirituality in recovery can aid in restoring what was once good. It can serve as a reminder that there’s a greater purpose beyond substance dependency. These pillars are essential to those taking the first step toward sobriety.
When someone struggles with a substance abuse disorder, it’s the center of all actions. Using spirituality in recovery to rediscover the authentic self apart from addiction is a powerful tool to:
- Help you navigate negative thoughts and emotions and regain peace
- Reintroduce the importance of love for yourself and others
- Provide a touchstone for understanding the world
- Promote happiness
- Reinforce your sense of purpose
Is Spirituality Right for You?
There’s never a one-size-fits-all approach to overcoming an addiction. What’s “right” for one person may be “wrong” for another. Instead, it’s important to focus on what works for you. The right approach in recovery will make it much more likely that you complete the program successfully, leave the program sober, and maintain sobriety long-term.
The best way to find out what your treatment options are, and to find a facility that most closely matches your rehab goals, is to consult with a addiction treatment professionals. Determining if spirituality in recovery is the best fit, consider how the following sentiments may be applicable to your situation:
- Believing in something bigger than oneself
- Finding comfort in a belief system
- Searching for meaning in experiences
- Living by a set of values
- Experiencing awe in the face of something transcendent
Spirituality in recovery can provide the following benefits:
- Increase compassion, empathy and attention
- Improve your sense of connection — it can actually boost your physical health.
- Help you live a healthier life
- Encourage you to work through negative emotions
- Make it easier to overcome hardships
AspenRidge can help to address spiritual concerns during the recovery process. For those who are interested in exploring their spirituality or getting back to it, adding it to their recovery can be an excellent way to feel better faster. With a quality and caring staff, we can help you address substance abuse, mental health, and long-term sobriety. While our programs are not all oriented in faith-based practices, we develop tailored approaches that fit needs and preferences.
Contact AspenRidge Recovery Centers at 855-281-5588 to speak to staff about various programs and treatment methods for alcohol, drug, and other co-occurring disorders. Gaining knowledge prior to taking the steps towards recovery is crucial, and AspenRidge is determined to help in the recovery process and connect those with the proper treatment methods including spirituality in recovery.