Counseling, therapy, physical fitness, healthy eating, and social interaction are all vital aspects of addiction recovery. Counseling and therapy can help you overcome difficult life challenges, regulate your emotions, and develop healthier habits. Physical fitness and nutrition can help restore your body’s health, keep you strong, and relieve stress. Social interaction can help develop your communication skills and show you what healthy, functional, and thriving relationships look like.
Spirituality can be an important aspect of the addiction recovery process, as well. Like many other components of the recovery process, spirituality can provide you with a sense of purpose, support, and inspiration for the future. While spirituality can be a large part of your recovery healing process, the concept can also be easily misunderstood. In this article, we’ll explore spirituality in addiction recovery; the part of the human experience that helps you explore who you are and what your life is about.
What Is Spirituality?
One of the most common misconceptions about spirituality is that it’s tied to a specific religion. Even though most people of faith are spiritual, religion and spirituality are two different concepts. Spirituality is about understanding and connecting to something bigger than you. Spirituality is not restricted to a particular religious belief, nor does it require particular actions, practices, or traditions.
Even though spirituality can look differently for everyone, common aspects of spirituality typically include:
- Becoming aware of your own “moral compass”
- Learning to use your moral compass as a guide for how to live your life
- Discovering unique gifts, talents, skills, and abilities, and creating a life using them
- Forgiving people who have hurt or abused you in the past
- Seeking forgiveness from others
- Gaining new insights and ”learning” from your experience with addiction
- Respecting yourself and others
- Gaining perspective on your problems
- Realizing that you and everyone else in the world has human weaknesses and asking for help when you need assistance
- “Giving back” to the community by volunteering or working in an addiction-related field
Drug addiction diminishes your spirituality. When you’re grappling with addiction challenges, you’re not thinking about your purpose. You’re not seeking perspective, using your moral compass, or thinking about the people around you. In fact, the more compulsive and obsessive your addiction becomes the less likely you are to think about who you are, what your life is about, and your role in the culture, community, and world. Luckily, though, the addiction recovery process is a great time to reestablish your spirituality.
The Importance of Spirituality In Addiction Recovery
Addiction can disrupt nearly every aspect of your life. Luckily, rediscovering your spirituality can help you find your sense of self again. Spirituality can support the addiction recovery process by:
- Restoring your self-worth
- Giving you a new sense of purpose
- Helping you regulate negative thoughts and emotions
- Providing you with a sense of peace
- Promoting happiness and hope
- Providing you a touchstone and holistic perspective for understanding the world
- Reminding you of the importance of self-love and love for others
Engaging in specific spiritual practices can help inspire, motivate, uplift, and encourage you to make positive changes in your life.
How Spirituality Benefits Addiction Recovery
Spirituality isn’t a one-size-fits-all kind of concept. Different spirituality practices resonate with different people. However, there are some specific spiritual practices that can help support the recovery process, such as:
- Expressing gratitude. Giving thanks for the things in your life that are going well can help change your mindset. Instead of focusing on what’s going wrong in your life, gratitude helps you shift your focus on what is going right. If you enjoy journaling, take a moment to write down 3 or 4 things you’re grateful for every day. If you don’t really enjoy journaling, you can share what you’re grateful for in individual or group counseling.
- Practicing mindfulness and meditation. Even though these practices have been around for hundreds of years, mindfulness and meditation have only recently become popular parts of Western culture. When you meditate, you’ll focus on a series of exercises that can help you breathe deeply and clear your mind. Mindfulness teaches you to look at and focus on all the details that make life beautiful. Both of these practices can help you relieve stress, regulate negative thoughts and emotions, ease anxiety and depression, promote peace, and help you overcome cravings.
- Attending 12-step meetings that focus on your spiritual side. Even though the 12 steps aren’t tied to any specific religion, they do encourage you to develop a connection to a higher power. In fact, a shortened version of the serenity prayer is the cornerstone of many 12-step programs. The prayer, which asks God to help you accept things you cannot change and to grant you the courage to better the things you can change, reminds you of the support needed on the recovery journey. Like other aspects of spirituality used in addiction recovery, 12-step meetings provide support, promote hope, provide a realistic and holistic perspective, and restore self-worth.
- Embracing faith. You certainly don’t have to be religious to explore the spiritual part of yourself. Nonetheless, practicing a specific faith can uplift you in difficult times and provide you with hope when you’re feeling hopeless or worthless.
Addiction Treatment Rooted in Spiritual Practices
Here at Genesis Recovery, we provide a spiritually-therapeutic addiction recovery treatment experience that combines faith, clinical science, and community. Our treatment approach truly embraces the spirituality of the 12-step program. We strongly believe that finding or reestablishing your spiritual self is one of the best ways to support your recovery journey.
Detoxing from drugs and alcohol is great. Participating in behavioral therapy and individual and group counseling is even better. But knowing who you are, what your gifts and skills are, and what you’re living for is the key to long-lasting addiction recovery.
We can help you get there. Call Genesis Recovery today at 619-797-7319 if you or a loved one are struggling with addiction and are looking for a drug rehab center that can truly help meet your recovery and rehabilitation needs.