If you or a loved one is struggling with drug or alcohol addiction then inpatient treatment should be the next thing that you seriously try.
I say this because inpatient treatment is the solution that I resisted for so long in my own struggle with alcoholism and drug addiction. I had actually been to inpatient twice before and failed miserably at it. So I believed that these two failures gave me the perfect excuse as to why I should avoid going back to rehab. “It didn’t work, I tried it twice and failed.”
The reason i had failed is because I did not surrender fully at the time. Timing is everything when it comes to inpatient treatment. You are either ready to get clean and sober or you are not. And if you choose to go to treatment at the point of total and complete surrender then this will be the best thing you have ever done by far. Turning your life around in recovery and becoming your own experiment in personal growth is the single best way for an addict or alcoholic to live their life. Nothing in your experiences in active addiction even comes close to the joy, freedom, and happiness that you will experience if you really get into recovery and give it a chance.
Of course no one really wants to give it a chance. No one wants to embrace addiction recovery because it is so painful to do so in the short run. You have to give up your drug of choice, and in fact you have to give up all addictive substances at the same time with no real option to self medicate with. This is really uncomfortable for most any human being, to face reality without a shield, without a crutch. And so when we get even a tiny glimpse of sobriety we run away, we flee in fear because we do not want to see the person that we have become. It is easier to keep wearing a mask, to take chemicals and medicate ourselves so that we don’t have to feel, to think, to see ourselves for who we really are.
Recovery flips that all around and the idea is that you start from scratch. A blank slate. This is why the struggling alcoholic or addict should consider rehab. Go to inpatient treatment, go through the detox process, and get into residential treatment. You know, the 28 day program that everyone is terrified of facing because it seems like a really long time. Go check in to one of those, reset your life, and start finding some positive support on the outside. Follow up with meetings, counseling, therapy, and whatever else they recommend for you. This is how you build a foundation and begin to seriously turn your life around in recovery. This is where it all begins and you start to live like a real human being again.
When you go through inpatient treatment you get a second chance at life. You can slowly rebuild and learn how to enjoy yourself without chemicals and substances. This is the ticket to freedom that you never knew existed. And it is also the path to freedom that you were too afraid to embrace. When you go to inpatient rehab you are going to meet a group of peers who are also trying to stay clean and sober like yourself. Getting to know some peers in recovery is one of the most powerful things that you can do. We do not recover in isolation. Everyone needs help in order to recover, and everyone needs to know that they are not the only one who feels like they are going crazy in early recovery. Without peer support it is very likely that you will fail to remain sober.
After treatment the world is a blank slate for you and you can begin to rebuild your life. At first you focus on the negative aspects of addiction, shedding all of your bad habits, and figuring out that the old life in addiction is not what you want any more. But then as you maintain sobriety something amazing will happen, and you will begin to figure out what you do want. This is where recovery gets really good, and things start to get interesting. Now you not only have a blank canvas that is your life, but you realize that you have the power to create what you want with it. You can start to set goals, figure out what you want, and then set out to achieve those things. And these are not just pipe dreams like you had in your addiction, but real goals that you can actually achieve.
As you maintain sobriety and work towards these new goals, something even more amazing will happen–you will meet and achieve a few of these new goals. Not all of them, but some of them for sure. And that will be another revelation for you, because now you will see that you have real power. Not power in the sense that you are some kind of power hungry monster, but powerful in the sense that you realize you can control your own life again, that the addiction is no longer controlling you, and that you can bend the universe to meet your will in some ways. And you may find this to be especially true if you are bending the will of the universe so that you can help and serve others.
In other words, as the 12 steps of AA and NA suggest, you may find yourself reaching out to help other people in recovery, and being much more effective at doing so than you ever could have imagined. Not only that, but you will realize that doing this is a huge boost to your recovery, and your own happiness as well. The pot of gold at the end of your recovery efforts was not so much material pleasures, but it was the awesome feeling that you get from helping others in recovery. There is no way to put a price on that feeling when you accomplish this in your own life, in your own way, using your own unique strengths and talents. Your higher power will use you how it sees fit to do so, and when you realize that you can make a positive impact on others based on your past experience in addiction, it is a very powerful thing.
So dive into addiction recovery with confidence, knowing that the path will lead you to peace, happiness, and serenity some day. Work hard in your early recovery, knowing that the rewards will come later on. Fight your way into a treatment center, at any cost, knowing that the experience will pay massive dividends in nearly every way you that you can possibly imagine. For example, I still know many of the people that I first met when I went to treatment over 15 years ago, and I count some of those key relationships to be priceless to me.
Everyone is scared at first at the prospect of going to inpatient rehab. No one would expect you to walk into the doors of detox being totally courageous and ready for anything without having at least a hint of anxiety. That is not realistic, and that is not how your recovery was meant to unfold in the first place. We all have to take those first few tentative steps into recovery. We all have to face our fears in order to overcome them and be stronger as a result. But if you or your loved one is willing to pick up the phone and call a treatment center today then you are ready to take that first courageous step towards a new life in recovery. You have no idea how powerful you will become if you leave the drugs and alcohol behind and walk courageously into treatment.
Maybe you have been to rehab before, and maybe you haven’t. The truth is, unless you walk through the doors of rehab in a state of total and complete surrender, you can not really say that you have given it your best effort. Total and complete surrender means that you completely abandon yourself, become willing to do whatever it takes, and become willing to follow any directions that you are given. Once you hit bottom and can say that you are ready to do whatever it takes, then you are finally ready to go to inpatient rehab and transform your life forever.