WHAT THE ALCOHOLIC/DRUG ADDICT LEARNS DURING RECOVERY

He or she needs to:

Be Convinced from his own experience that his reaction to alcohol or other drugs is so abnormal that any indulgence for him constitutes a totally undesirable and impossible way of life.

Be Completely Sincere in her desire to stop drinking/using.

Recognize that the problem of drinking/using for him is not merely a problem of dissipation but of a dangerous pathological reaction to a drug.

Come to Understand that some of the motives behind his thinking have been some form of self-expression, or a desire to gratify cravings for attention, or to escape from unpleasant reality.

Learn to Withstand success as well as failure since pleasant emotions can also serve as "good" excuses for taking a drink or using.

Understand that excuses like "alcohol/drug abuse ancestry" are not reasons for continuing with abnormal drinking/using.

Realize that a reasonably intelligent and sincere person who is willing to make a sustained effort for a sufficient period of time is capable of learning to live without alcohol and other drugs.

Avoid the small glass of wine or the apparently harmless "buzz" with even more determination than the obvious hard stuff.

Never to be so Foolish as to try to persuade herself that she can drink one beer or other drug, or offer temporary boredom as an excuse to herself for drinking/using.

Disabuse his Mind of any illusions about alcohol or other drugs sharpening up or polishing his wit, intellect, and charm.

Learn to be tolerant of others in their mistakes, poor judgement, and/or poor manners without becoming emotionally disturbed.

Recognize alcoholic/drug using daydreaming the "good old days," favorite bars, etc., as a very dangerous pastime.

Carefully Follow a daily self-imposed schedule that consciously carried out aids in organizing a disciplined personality, developing new habits for old, and bringing out a new rhythm of living.

Learn to be especially on guard during periods of change in his life that involve emotion or fatigue.

Try to Acquire a mature sense of values and learn to be controlled by his judgement instead of his emotions.

Realize that in Giving Up drinking/using, he/she should not regard herself as a martyr or hero, entitled to make unreasonable demands that his family give in to his/her every wish and whim. He should realize instead, with gratitude, that he has gotten rid of something that was killing him and destroying his relationships.

Beware of unconsciously projecting himself into the role of some character in a movie or book who handles alcohol or other drugs "like a gentleman" and persuading himself that he can do likewise with equal impunity.

Learn the importance of eating regularly since one of the best preventions for that tired feeling which leads to drinking/using is food. Carrying candy bars or other candy with him to eat between meals, or drinking milk or juice when the urge to drink/use hits, can often avert a drinking/using episode when tired, restless, or jittery.

Learn to relax naturally, both mentally and physically, without the sedative effects of alcohol or other drugs.

Not Neglect care of his physical health because that is an important part of his recovery.

Learn to avoid needless hurry and resultant fatigue by concentrating on what he is doing rather than on what he is going to do next.

Never Relax her determination or become careless, lazy, indifferent, or cocky in her efforts to eliminate the desire for alcohol or other drugs.

Not to be Discouraged by feelings of discontent during the early stages of sobriety but rather to turn this feeling into incentive for action that will satisfy his desire for self-expression.

Understand that besides abstinence the real goal is a happy and contented way of life.

Appreciate the seriousness of continuing re-education and to regard it as the most important thing in life.

Realize That most people seeking help for drinking/using are above average in intellectual endowment and that although drinking/using has meant failure, sobriety will mean success.