The addiction recovery process can be long, complicated, and filled with pitfalls. Sobriety is difficult to maintain and most addicts are aware of this before they begin the addict recovery process. It’s why they manage their expectations of long-term care in such a way that with the right help, they can find support to consistently maintain a life away from abusing drugs or alcohol. Too high expectations and you will find it much harder to attain them. Too low, and you can potentially damage your own self-esteem.
It’s important to set the best, most realistic expectations in addiction recovery, and this will help you to have a framework for success. First, we must understand what unrealistic expectations are vs real ones.
What are unrealistic expectations in the addiction recovery process?
Most of the time, the expectations that are most unrealistic are those that are far too high. Whether it’s about the treatment process or life beyond treatment, you have to consider whether your expectations in recovery are going to be a possibility for you. Some of the most unrealistic expectations include:
- The expectation that recovery will be an easy thing to do
- Expecting that you won’t relapse – ever.
- Thinking you can do it alone
- Expecting treatment to make you feel better immediately.
- Believing recovery will solve all your problems.
Of course, there are many more unrealistic expectations and the problem with these is that if you hold these as real for you, you’re going to find that you fail faster. It’s like measuring your progress up a mountain rather than just a small step at a time. You can’t conquer a mountain in the first go, but you can take several steps one at a time. The danger of unrealistic expectations means that while you’re not doomed to fail, you will find recovery and treatment far harder than it needs to be. It’s much harder to bounce back from disappointment and relapse if your expectations are too high.
Setting realistic expectations
Being realistic about your recovery can help you to stay on track. You’re more able to succeed because you believe that you can. It goes far beyond avoiding relapse, too. Some of the reasons it’s super important to have realistic expectations for this process include:
- You’ll be better prepared mentally for the process of recovery from addiction
- You’ll understand that this process won’t be easy
- You’ll be ready to show up and ready to succeed
- You’ll avoid any surprises such as relapse or temptation; you’ll be prepared for it.
- You’ll reduce your stress. Without huge expectations of the outcome, you don’t feel pressured to measure up to something unrealistic.
- You can be more patient with yourself if your body is taking time to recover.
- You’ll feel better about monitoring your progress.
How to Set Realistic Expectations
During the process of addiction recovery, you know that you need to make sure that your expectations of the process are realistic, and taking a healthy approach requires some reflection. You can start by remembering that you didn’t become an addict overnight. This process is going to take longer than overnight. Going to a treatment center is daunting, but it can make you feel much better to know that you are around experts who know what they’re talking about with your addiction. Remember that this is a process and it’s different for every single person who enters it.
Learning more about your addiction can also help. If you were diagnosed with any other condition you’d be keen to learn about it. Treat it that way, and you’ll be able to learn more about the chemistry that goes into addiction. When you learn all you can about addiction and your specific addiction, you’re going to prepare yourself for the process better. Getting the right help in developing your expectations will ensure that you can feel better supported through the process.
Consider your strengths and habits where possible. When you enter a treatment program, you have to go in knowing that this isn’t magic – you have to put in the work and that’s not always easy to do.
Get Some Help
The best thing that you can do right now for your addict recovery process and expectations of long-term care is to talk to an expert who can work with you through it. Contact Louisville Addiction Treatment Center now for more information. You can get back to your best in no time at all with the right help.