When we’re struggling with addiction, as with any other challenge, we sometimes have a tendency to rush to the finish line, to want to reach our end goal as quickly as possible. We’re tired of the struggle and want to finally experience success. We want to feel the relief of having finally finished. Seeing our recovery in this way, just as with anything we’re working towards, can cause us to become impatient and frustrated with ourselves. We grow disappointed when we haven’t met our expectations or progressed as quickly as we would have liked. We’re embarrassed, ashamed and full of regret if we slip up and relapse in our sobriety. We’re anxious, stressed out and worried all the time. Our impatience can cause us to be angry with ourselves and to become unkind towards ourselves. When we’re impatient, we’re more likely to beat ourselves up and to be self-deprecating in how we think about ourselves and speak to ourselves. All these things can impede our ability to focus on our well-being and achieve healing. How can learning patience increase our resilience?
Our resilience lies in our ability to keep trying no matter how many times we might have felt disappointed, defeated or disheartened. We develop resilience when we pick ourselves up, over and over again, every time we falter or fail, every time we’re frustrated with ourselves, every time we think we’re too far gone and just want to give up. When we’re impatient, we’re not giving ourselves the full energy of our own supportiveness. We’re not encouraging ourselves, we’re not motivating ourselves, and we’re not pushing ourselves with tough love. We’re just knocking ourselves down, little by little. We’re piling the weight of our expectations on top of ourselves, causing ourselves more mental and emotional difficulty, especially when we’re already in fragile and vulnerable states from having to deal with the many stresses of recovery and all the disappointment that can arise for us. When we’re impatient and unloving with ourselves, in a way we’re turning our backs on our inner selves, betraying ourselves and denying ourselves love, compassion, and understanding.
Being patient with ourselves gives us more strength and encouragement to keep trying, to test ourselves, to challenge ourselves, and to push ourselves. When we’re patient with ourselves, we’re empowering ourselves rather than knocking ourselves down. We’re giving ourselves the love and support we need to keep going, to have faith in ourselves even when we’re feeling uncertain, self-doubting and insecure. Treating ourselves with the energy of patience gives us the internal environment we need to develop our resilience and to keep working towards our goals.
If you’re struggling with addiction, you’re not alone. Reach out for support. The community of Riverside Recovery has personal experience with addiction and recovery. We’re here to help you reclaim the life you love. Call (800) 871-5440 today.