Being mean to yourself doesn’t help. I’ve heard people say, “My worst day sober is better than my best day drunk.” I can’t relate. Life in sobriety isn’t always easy. Life isn’t always easy, period. How I react to difficult situations is far from perfect. I know I’m not the only one who piggybacks a poorly maneuvered reaction with being extremely hard on myself for it. Doubling down does not help me do better next time. Self-compassion doesn’t provide a get out of jail free card. With self-compassion in tow, instead of becoming more dismissive of our own harmful behavior, we become less accepting. Self-compassion increases self-worth and reduces selfishness, which allows for space to practice aligning our behaviors with our values
Always keep a handful of it in your pocket. Something seemingly insignificant can send me spiraling down into a pool of negativity. I will stay there and marinate in self-pity and self-judgement, believing that I shouldn’t have gotten in this position in the first place. I deserve what I get, I tell myself over and over again. It is much easier to climb out of the water if I am holding onto a handful of self-compassion.
Let go of excuses. My brain likes to tell me that there are so many things I should be able to do, and I need to just try harder. I believe I must push myself to be more than I am. I might admit to myself that I can’t do something, which then I feel the need to qualify with reasons as to why I can’t (ie; I wasn’t feeling well, I was depressed, I couldn’t concentrate). It would be much easier to let go of the shame by being compassionate and telling myself that it’s OK. With or without excuses, it is still OK, because we are all imperfect humans.
Take responsibility without taking all the blame. Many of us tend to grapple with guilt and shame in the wake of our addictions. Not to mention the painful aftershocks, both physical and emotional. Coming to terms with the things we experienced and taking stock of our part in those experience is an arduous process. I’ve found it challenging to take responsibility without taking all the blame.
Stop resisting. If you’re like me, then you have a hard time being kind to yourself and even resist it at times. When life is good, I find myself being extremely self-critical. I don’t feel worthy of truly good things and sabotage myself to try to counteract the guilt and privilege that happiness and health entail. Self-compassion reminds me that it is okay to be happy. I do not have to beat myself up for not spending every moment immersed in trying to solve the world’s problems. I’m not a bad person for taking the time to just exist and feel joy. I’m also not a bad person if I struggle to take that time to feel joy.
Keep it simple. If you can’t let go of excuses or find the balance between responsibility and blame, there are still ways to practice self-compassion. I suggest for you to try one thing first: be nice to yourself. Just be kind to yourself.
ADMISSIONS IS AS EASY AS
Your first step is a quick and easy evaluation, with questions including current substance use, willingness to go through treatment, and whether you would need medical detox. This allows our admissions specialists to build a plan of the next steps to best fit you or your loved ones needs.
Your background assessment is also completed during your initial call. Questions will include treatment history, substance abuse history, existing medical conditions, and psychiatric history. This information will be passed onto our masters experienced clinicians, should you choose to admit, to create a treatment plan for your stay.
Once they’ve gathered necessary information, our admissions team will do a free insurance verification to discuss if you have any out of pocket cost for treatment at GateHouse. They will also recommend participation in certain therapy modalities and go over your next steps.