Improve Self Esteem to Recover From Addiction

Posted on :  March 23rd, 2015  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Working through any type of addiction can throw a monkey wrench into anyone’s self-esteem. People who are working through addictions often have specific themes in their lives that they need to address. Most are looking for a reason for living, a place where they can be sober, and some need to get back to work. Others need to work on their relationships with loved ones. When people who are working on their addictions, these themes are difficult to manage until they have worked on their relationships with themselves – which is often called Emotional Competence. Instead of taking care of external issues, people who have emotional competence will work on themselves first. Without working on themselves, they cannot work outside of themselves.

Emotional competence involves self-awareness, -regulation, and -motivation. People who are looking for this should ask themselves about their feelings and thoughts, as well as their personal understanding of strengths and weaknesses. They should be able to control their own responses to stimuli so they are not impulsive. They are also usually looking for results through their commitment, initiative, and optimism. For people who have been torn apart by addiction and recovery, achieving a sense of emotional competence takes time and energy.

Low self-esteem is caused by several reasons, but those who are recovering from addiction do not necessarily need to know why their self-esteem is low. There are usually several reasons that cause low self-esteem; but since the past cannot be changed, it is better to focus on the present and future. Here are a few ideas to focus on improving self-esteem:

  1. Write about yourself. In a journal, you can begin improving your self-esteem by writing about yourself. You should write sentences about all of the things you like about yourself and all of the things you could like about yourself. You can make lists of these sentences or you can write in any other way that works for you. Only write positive things about yourself.
  2. Talk to yourself. When you do this, you give yourself affirmations about the good things. Your affirmations should be said in the present time about realistic things. You should say them to yourself in a mirror or record them on your phone. This makes them more realistic and meaningful. After you have said them aloud, add them to your journal.
  3. Give back. One sure way to improve your self-esteem is to share with others. This can easily be done by volunteering your time. Volunteering is a good thing and you will feel so good about helping people without asking for anything in return.
  4. Meditate. This might sound “new-agey” and difficult to do, but simple meditation just involves the breath and a thought. Meditation begins by focusing on the breath. You can then think about something you really enjoy. It is important to not judge yourself, because meditation takes time to do well, so start by meditating for two minutes or less and slowly build up in time.
  5. Get help. You obviously care enough about yourself to recover from your addiction, so you should also care enough to work on your mental health. A licensed therapist is a good option for working on your own self-esteem. The gentle, non-judgmental ear and supportive voice of a well-trained therapist can do wonders.
  6. Build a hobby. This could be something new or something that you have done in the past. If you love to knit, knit more. If you find that you enjoy volunteering, volunteer more. The time you spend doing what you love will keep you feeling good and help you build your self-esteem without having to think too much about it.

If you have any questions about addiction recovery and building self-esteem, contact Towards Recovery Clinics at 905-527-2042.

Who We Serve ?

  • Individuals using/abusing street narcotics (e.g. heroin).
  • Patients abusing prescription narcotics(i.e., Codeine, Talwin, Percocet/Percodan, Dilaudid, Morphine or Demerol, et cetera).
  • Individuals displaying any of the following behaviours: Compulsive drug use or drug seeking/craving.