Here are 4 steps that helped me when I knew I needed to make mine.
When I think back about the (dark) days, when drug and alcohol abuse consumed me, I think about the person I was then. My actions. My words. During those days I was not a pleasant person to be around. I was moody, irritable, derogatory, angry, selfish, not very dependable and just plain mean at times. There were times when even I didn’t like me.
I’ve done some thinking about the steps I took that got me to where I am today. They weren’t easy, but they weren’t hard either. It just took an honest assessment of myself, and the resolve to make the changes I needed to make. I want to share the most important ones for me, with you.
What did i do to turn things around?
- Stop hanging around with toxic people.
- Made a conscious decision that I was going to straighten out my life.
- Be the kind of son my dad could be proud of.
- Took responsibility for my actions.
Stop hanging around with toxic people
I strongly believe people form habits and patterns in life. They become hard, if-not impossible to break unless we break form the very people contributing to this kind of behavior. Abusers like to hang around with other abusers. They relate. The have basically the same struggles. In order to break these habits and patterns we have to separate ourselves from the people who contribute to them. If not, your destined to repeat these patterns.
Made a conscious decision that I was going to straighten out my life
If your not willing to get it in your head that your situation has to change, your not going to change your behavior. Simple as that. When you’ve gotten to the end of your rope, and you’ve had enough, you have to do something about it. No friend, family member or counselor can do it for you. You have to make the positive changes to yourself that will reflect back on you in time. And it will take time. Be patient. Please don’t get frustrated and give up. It will get easier I promise you.
Be the kind of son my dad could be proud of
My dad passed away before my full metamorphosis, but none-the-less he saw most of it. And I know he would be proud. The reason I used my dad – and you can use who you wish – is for accountability purposes. You need someone who can hold you accountable for your actions when you slip-up. And you will slip-up from time to time. But don’t let that discourage you, it’s going to happen. Just keep the bigger picture in mind. Sometimes when we make promises to ourselves and, don’t fulfill those promises. We tend not to hold ourselves accountable. That’s why it’s important to find someone who will hold you to them.
Took responsibility for my actions
For me this was the most important step in my process of healing. I no longer blamed everyone else around me for my mistakes. With me it was always someone else’s fault for my plight. This guy pissed me off so I went and drank to forget it. That situation didn’t turn out like I planned so I took a few pills to escape. We’ll always find excuses not to change. Stop doing that. It’s important to standup, take responsibility for what you’ve done and fix it. It’s not easy but feels great!
When I decided to make my transformation, I just took it one day at a time. I didn’t think in terms of weeks out or even days out. I just did whatever it took to get me through today and into tomorrow. Long range plans didn’t seem to fit-in when I thought I wouldn’t make it to the next day. Making one simple change a day helped me to stay on track. If I could just make this one positive change today, live it into tomorrow and, then into the next day, I knew it would resonate.
This was all done on my own cognitive choices and I know you can do it also. We all have the power inside us. We just need to find it, wake it and live it. Be, think, and live that positive change.