This is one of the outcomes of the creative theory of recovery–your personality changes for the better.
The biggest reason for this is that drug seeking behavior is eliminated in recovery, along with all of the behaviors and manipulation that might come along with maintaining a life of addiction. A balanced lifestyle is achieved and obsessive thinking leaves us. We become useful to ourselves, to others, and to society in general….and we feel good about ourselves in doing so. This is in stark contrast to our self-centered and self seeking behavior we displayed during active addiction.
In other words, if a drug addict or alcoholic manages to get sober and start living the creative life, their personality will change for the better.
But it’s actually a bit deeper than that. The shift in personality is all part of the spiritual experience, which is critical for the creative life in recovery. Here are some of the outcomes of that shift:
1) Helpfulness – Shift from self-centeredness and drug seeking behavior towards a genuine interest in others and their well-being (for example, helping other addicts and alcoholics in recovery takes on special meaning). This is a huge concept that the newcomer in recovery might not even be aware of, because they have not yet experienced it, nor do they see how it could help them to stay sober.
2) Emphasis on spiritual growth – a connection with a higher power helps guide us in decision making. We embrace the spiritual life and develop a sensitivity to spiritual issues (for example, if a newcomer is talking to us about how to go about finding their higher power).
3) Growth oriented mindset – once you’re living the creative life in recovery, there is a tendency to push yourself to grow further (achieve goals, learn new things, try new experiences, etc.)
Note that in all cases, the resulting personality shift in recovery is always positive. Personally, I did not believe this when I was still in active addiction. I thought that if I were to get sober, I would be like the hole left after eating the doughnut. This worry is unfounded because the creative life in recovery always improves your personality due to the emotional and spiritual growth you are experiencing.
The lesson? Don’t be afraid to change!