The Ultimate Guide to Building Self-Awareness in Recovery

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For many people in addiction recovery, true growth and understanding take place when they’re able to look within themselves. Deep inward reflection like this creates self-awareness, which in turn provides insight into thoughts and emotions. If you’re ready to see some incredibly positive changes in your recovery, it’s time to sit down and look within.

Losing Identity in Active Addiction

Typically, those that have toiled long and hard in the throes of addiction have lost their sense of self. Personal identity can get so wrapped up in drugs, alcohol and the lifestyle of addiction, that people often forget who they are in the absence of those things. With this knowledge, it makes sense that the early stages of recovery from addiction can feel scary and overwhelming at times. Maybe you don’t know who you are without your addiction. Perhaps you have been numb for so long that you have lost the ability to identify and feel your emotions. Maybe the thought of following dreams or engaging in new hobbies seems terrifying to you. How can you do those things if you don’t even know what you like to begin with? Don’t worry. It’s perfectly normal to have these thoughts and fears. You’re not alone, and learning to practice self-awareness can help.

What Is Self-Awareness?

Self-awareness is defined by many sources as, “the conscious knowledge of one’s character, feelings, motives, and desires.” In addiction recovery, self-awareness helps you build that sense of identity that is often lost during active addiction. By learning to name your experience and your emotions, you can better understand who you are and what your morals and values are. Self-awareness can reconnect you with your internal reality, which can then change the way you experience life and the world around you. Increasing conscious awareness of yourself and your behavior patterns allows you to create the changes necessary in your life to break free of old cycles. However, inner work like this is a commitment and it takes time. It doesn’t happen overnight. Remember to always be patient with yourself and gentle with your progress. 

Self-Awareness to Support Addiction Recovery

It’s not uncommon for those in addiction recovery to find themselves essentially “stuck” in a cycle of substance abuse. What these individuals may not realize, is that certain thought and behavior patterns may be contributing to their staying stuck. Learning to practice self-awareness in recovery is crucial, as it brings consciousness to the otherwise unconscious. 

Maybe you have tried to get sober many times and always find yourself relapsing at around 6 months. By practicing self-awareness, you may realize that this may be due to your tendency to fill up your life with work and relationships, leaving little time to engage in the recovery behaviors that helped you get sober, to begin with. Perhaps you even recognize your emotional patterns throughout this process and the thought loops that lead you back to drinking and/or using. By understanding and taking responsibility for these thoughts and behavior patterns, you can consciously break the cycle and create a plane that will support your long-term recovery instead. 

At Avalon Malibu, we offer several opportunities for our clients to cultivate self-awareness. You can learn to connect to your inner self through recovery-related activities such as meditation, yoga, art therapy, massage therapy and more. If you’re ready to break the cycles of addiction and build self-awareness on your recovery journey, speak with a professional from Avalon Malibu today, at 844-857-5992.

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