How Patience Can Help in Recovery

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Patience in recovery is defined as the ability to accept delays and deal with stress in a calm and non-aggressive manner. It is understood that rebuilding and adapting to a new life and way of thinking would take time. If a person has used drugs for years or even decades, it will take time to learn new habits. The goal is to remain patient with the process while also not becoming complacent.

You may be wondering how to practice patience in addiction recovery. It may appear to be a silly question, yet it is warranted. Practicing patience may make or break a person’s ability to stay sober. It all comes down to understanding the bigger picture in your recovery journey. Living only for today but understanding that each day builds on the previous one is the most effective way to stay focused on the road to recovery.

Benefits of Patience

Although patience may seem like a virtue of the past, it is a practice that comes with several benefits. If you are impatient, you tend to get irritable without any reason. You may also feel violated or attempt to force the outcome you want. Both can be detrimental to the addiction recovery process.

On the other hand, patience allows you to take a step back and examine your situation. You can overcome your anger and frustration by taking a deep breath. Patience also allows you to express your emotions in a healthy way. When you act right away, you risk hurting yourself or others. However, if you practice patience, you may utilize a healthy coping mechanism to avoid an outburst.

How to Practice Patience?

Developing patience might take time, but one can take steps to do so. A person dealing with addiction can discuss patience-building strategies with a counselor or peers in a support group.

Practice Waiting

Practice is one of the most effective ways to become more patient. During recovery from addiction, patience can be demonstrated by understanding that things will take longer than anticipated and being open to adjusting treatment plans based on current needs.

Finding a hobby involving a lot of waiting is another approach to developing patience. This hobby may be gardening, learning to fish, or undertaking an art project with several phases that must be finished sequentially. 

Practicing thankfulness can also assist individuals in focusing on the things they do have rather than getting discouraged by their unachieved goals. People attempting to develop patience might carry a notepad or journal and record three things they are grateful for whenever they feel frustrated.

Keep a Journal

An essential aspect of patience is learning how to control one’s emotions. Journaling in recovery can help in this regard. Writing down things that provoke negative feelings such as fear, anger, or irritation may help a person discover how to cope with them and sometimes even make them disappear. 

When people force themselves to wait and think before acting, they might avoid making mistakes they will later come to regret. Other benefits of writing in recovery may include tracking moods and cravings more appropriately, which can help individuals identify their triggers.

Practice Mindfulness

The adage ” focus on the journey, not the destination” is well known. Mindfulness is the act of paying attention to the things that are happening in the present moment. Mindfulness in addiction rehabilitation may be highly beneficial when the final goal appears far. 

Guilt or anxiety can be lessened by concentrating on the now rather than the past or the future. Many studies have reported how practicing mindfulness can help those in recovery avoid relapse. 

When recovering, people might practice mindfulness by engaging in yoga, meditation, deep breathing exercises, or other relaxation techniques. But the simplest way to accomplish this is to constantly observe, hear, feel, and experience what is happening!

Set Realistic Goals & Expectations

If someone believes their life will improve quickly after detox, they will likely be disappointed. Recovery is a lengthy process, and impatience, lost desire, and sadness result from expecting immediate improvement. It is also crucial to know that 40 and 60 percent of those in treatment for drug or alcohol abuse relapse.

However, this does not imply that the situation is hopeless. It simply means that individuals must be realistic about their addiction recovery challenges. Conversation with a counselor or a peer support group might aid in formulating attainable addiction recovery objectives.

In this approach, individuals might gain increased self-confidence and motivation when they achieve their objectives. In recovery, goal-setting is a continuous process. People must be adaptable and modify their goals if they find a plan too ambitious or their priorities shift. 

It is also important to remember that everyone in recovery experiences unpleasant days, and those healthy outlets for anger and other negative emotions may be helpful. Examples include physical activity, venting to a buddy, and deep breathing.

Picture showing tips on how to practice patience.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why is patience important in recovery?

Patience in recovery can help individuals avoid relapse, learn to cope with challenging situations in a healthy manner, and make steady progress.

What are the five phases of recovery?

The five phases of recovery include:

  • Precontemplation Stage
  • Contemplation Stage
  • Preparation Stage
  • Action Stage
  • Maintenance Stage

What do you say to someone who is in recovery?

The following phrases will help you communicate with your loved ones in recovery in the most meaningful way:

  • I love you
  • You’re not alone
  • Everyone needs help sometimes
  • How are you feeling?
  • How can I help?
  • Let’s hang out
  • I’m proud of you
  • I know you struggle, but always remember there’s a hope

How do recovering addicts stay strong?

Tips for recovering addicts to stay strong:

  • Take care of your health
  • Be gentle with yourself
  • Focus on one day at a time
  • Reach out to your support network
  • Build new habits and routines
  • Make a plan for dealing with temptation
  • Focus on your goals

The Haven Can Aid in Recovery From Addiction

At The Haven, we have helped hundreds of patients overcome their addiction and return to everyday life. We understand how difficult the recovery process can be and have set out to provide a safe and comfortable facility for our patients to receive treatment. 

Using the most effective treatment methods, we seek to enhance the quality of life for individuals battling substance use disorder (SUD) or mental health issues.

If you or a loved one is suffering from drug or alcohol addiction, The Haven Detox is here to provide support. Speak with a trained and compassionate counselor at (561) 328-8627 for more information about our addiction treatment programs.