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The recovery movement emphasizes recovery versus pathology and understands addiction as a chronic condition. However, recovery management and recovery-oriented systems of care paradigms may not fully honor this paradigm shift. For example, continuing care interventions, such as Recovery Management Checkups, adequately treat addiction as a chronic condition with a long-view to recovery but many still focus exclusively, or disproportionately, on pathology. McKay’s insight creates an opening for positive psychology principles, constructs, measures, and interventions to be applied to continuing care and other recovery movement initiatives. The current study involves 67 individuals recruited just after entry into abstinence-based outpatient substance-use-disorder treatment.

  • Study 1 paired 105 individuals with a study confederate, an actor complicit with the researchers who the participants believed was just another study participant.
  • You may also want to create a dedicated gratitude journal to keep you focused.
  • Having a grateful mindset allows to take on challenges with a positive mindset and instead of seeing relapse as a failure, we can see it as an opportunity to improve.
  • Teaching them the importance of gratitude and helping them understand the proper ways to express this can help them in their recovery process as well.
  • Success in recovery from substance use disorders (SUDs) can mean a variety of different things to different people.
  • Gratitude is easy when things are going well, but no one is grateful for losing a job, a home, or health.
  • Beginning in the mid-1990s, but gaining momentum in the mid-2000s (White, 2008b), addiction recovery became a social movement separate and apart from positive psychology.

A grateful approach allows you to take on challenges with a positive mindset. For instance, rather than viewing relapse as a failure, you can see it as an opportunity to learn and grow. This perspective can help you stay motivated and committed to your recovery goals, even when times are tough. As the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius famously said, “Our life is what our thoughts make it.” In other words, if we change the way we think about life, if we change the way we think about the world around us, we can change our lives, too. By thinking positively and being grateful for what we have, we can live a more fruitful, favorable life. The quality of being thankful – thankful for all that we have, all that we have received, and all that has not befallen upon us.

Try gratitude breathing exercises

All of these relationships remained robust at the 3-year follow up except for total days of self-help meetings, which did not differ statistically between experimental and control groups at that time. In previous work, participants in recovery regularly expressed gratitude for sobriety (Krentzman et al., 2015). Perhaps gratitude for sobriety functions differently in its effects on drinking than more general trait gratitude, but the scale used to measure gratitude would not have differentiated between the two. Perhaps post-treatment gratitude has an association with future abstinence only among those who are already abstinent. Galanter (2007) describes the AA experience using a model of spiritually-grounded recovery, situated in contrast to pathological and behavioral perspectives on addiction. A number of benefits gained from AA participation are described by Galanter as grounded in spirituality, such as supportive social networks, group ties, adoption of a new understanding of life, and increases in positive affect.

When people show gratitude, they are less likely to reach for something new, hoping it will make them happier, or to believe that they can’t be satisfied until all their physical and material needs are met. Being grateful helps people focus on what they have instead of what they lack. Even though it may seem contrived at first, this mental state becomes more robust with practice. https://ecosoberhouse.com/article/the-importance-of-gratitude-in-recovery/ For example, take a few moments before bed and write a list of moments you feel grateful for from your day. However, when you continue forward with a grateful heart, the possibilities are endless. PP views substance use not as a deficit that is in need of a cure, but as the need for greater capacities built around the substance use, in other areas of a person’s life.

Benefits of Gratitude in Recovery

Real Recovery is Florida’s best rated and largest sober living community committed to you and your loved one’s success in long-term sobriety. Real Recovery is Florida’s best rated and largest sober living community committed to you and your loved one’s success in achieving long-term sobriety. When you think of expressing gratitude, you likely picture going out of your way to do something nice for someone, often involving a great deal of effort and planning. While gratitude can be expressed this way, it also can be expressed with very little effort at all. Expressing gratitude is a great way to show others that you appreciate their actions. It is also a simple way to repay the kindness of one person to someone else.

After 10 weeks of study, those who wrote about gratitude were more optimistic and felt better about their lives. They also worked out more and had fewer doctor visits than those who focused on what irritated or displeased them as well as the third group who wrote about the negative and positive events that affected them. You know why you need realistic expectations, https://ecosoberhouse.com/ but how do you go about developing them? Your preconceived notions about addiction recovery may not be the most realistic. Taking a healthy, realistic approach requires some research and careful reflection as you enter and work through the recovery process. Unrealistic expectations can happen at any time during the addiction recovery process.

What Are Unrealistic Expectations?

This should be taken with a grain of salt as a case study, but there is also plenty of evidence that techniques and exercises drawn from Buddhist teachings can have profound benefits for those who practice them. This is an amazing finding and suggests that gratitude journaling can be an effective supplement to treatment for depression. Instead of focusing on material possessions this holiday season, these nine tips can help you practice gratitude in recovery and learn how to be thankful and content with what you already have. Addiction strips away all the good things in life; health, happiness, contentment … you name it. Taking a moment to think about something good you have now can serve as a reminder of how far you’ve come since your addiction. Remembering the way your life was when you were addicted doesn’t have to drudge up feelings of regret or sadness.

by understanding gratitude how can that help move towards goals in recovery


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