Overcoming Growing Pains in Recovery

Edited by Paul Alexander

Last updated March 17, 2016

The triggers for substance use are diverse, but a common theme is often using drugs or alcohol as a way of coping with emotional or physical pain. Identifying these underlying factors supports clients in addressing them and creating healthier ways of working through these challenges. Addiction treatment can be painful sometimes because individuals often face difficult truths. However, it is through this pain that growth and healing occur.

There is a concept known as “posttraumatic growth” that applies to the experiences of many in addiction treatment. Following pain and traumatic experiences, positive growth can occur. You can use these situations as learning experiences that allow you to change how you see yourself, others and the world around you. For instance:

  • Through realizing the strain that addiction has put on your relationships, you can learn to appreciate others. You realize that the time we have is finite, and you value the relationships that have withstood your struggles with a substance use disorder.
  • You can also gain personal strength when you see that you have come through a difficult situation and arrived on the other side a stronger person. You build the motivation and confidence to keep going and overcome any setbacks you may experience because you have developed perseverance.
  • Pain can also change the way you see the world, which allows you to become more aware of your own thoughts and feelings and what is truly important in your life. Drugs and alcohol are no longer the focal point of each day, but instead the goals you have set for yourself and taking care of your own well-being take priority.

Building a strong support network and engaging in diverse therapy can help you to work through these challenges and overcome the pain you have experienced. You are not alone, and you do not have to go through the healing process alone. There is hope. Northbound Treatment Services meets you where you are at and provides individualized treatment plans to help you keep moving forward. Without pain, there cannot be growth, but you will have support each step of the way.

Leave us a comment on Facebook about the growth you have experienced through overcoming pain in recovery.

Article Reviewed by Paul Alexander

Paul AlexanderPaul Alexander is the founder and CEO of Northbound Treatment. He received his Certified Addiction Treatment Specialist training at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo, CA, and was awarded Outstanding Alumni Service Award in 2002. Paul holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminology, Law and Society, Summa Cum Laude, from University of California, Irvine, and a Juris Doctorate degree from Loyola Law School of Los Angeles. He believes wholeheartedly in transformational leadership, organizational health and effective, fully integrated substance use disorder treatment.


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