What is the key to getting help and solutions for substance dependence and drug abuse problems?
There are a number of key factors that can help lead the struggling addict to the help that they need. Let’s take a look at the process in more detail:
1) Surrender – First the addict as to make an internal decision to change their life for good and stop using drugs. This has to happen on a very deep level such that the person stays committed through the early recovery process. Most people who try to get clean and sober and end up relapsing had never fully surrendered in the first place. They can look back after their relapse and say “Yes, I was still holding on to something, some hope that I could use drugs successfully again someday, or some idea that I would deserve to get high again at some point if I stayed clean for while,” etc.
Complete surrender is what is necessary to make a successful start in recovery. Until the addict surrenders fully, they will not be able to make significant progress.
2) Asking for help – The addict must ask for help. Why is this necessary?
Because they cannot do it on their own. No true drug addict can solve their own drug problem without outside assistance. If they can, then they are not an addict. The definition of an addict is someone who needs outside help in order to beat their drug problem. Period.
Asking for help can come in many different forms. One of the most common ways though is to seek inpatient drug rehab. Admitting that you have a problem and that you are willing to check into a facility to get professional help is a huge step, and shows a bit of promise in itself. Most people who are in denial will not admit that they need inpatient rehab in order to overcome their problem. So anyone who agrees to go to treatment is pretty much “asking for help,” even if they did not initiate the action. Agreeing to attend rehab is a big step.
3) Taking action – Actually showing up for rehab is another story. Many people agree to go and then back out. Taking action means that they show up for treatment and start getting the help that they really need.
We can easily fool ourselves in recovery by thinking that our intentions matter. Or that our wishes matter. Or that our desire for something actually matters. None of it matters. All that matters are actions. What do we actually do? That is what determines our success in recovery, and in life. Our wishes and intentions mean nothing.
Take action if you want to see results. Simple as that.
4) Following through – Anyone can check into short term rehab and stay there for a few short weeks, then leave and end up relapsing almost immediately. In fact, this is what happens to the vast majority of addicts and alcoholics who attend short term facilities. In order to avoid this fate, a person needs to actually follow through on the suggestions and knowledge that they receive in rehab.
5) Long term growth – You would think that anyone who has achieved a few months or a year or two in recovery would be set for life. Not so. Many people do end up relapsing after years or even decades in recovery because they stop growing as a person. The way to overcome this is with personal growth. It need not be only spiritual growth. It can be holistic growth in many different areas of your life. But the key is to keep pushing yourself to make positive growth as you continue to stay clean and sober.