Let’s talk about Mondays. Monday is a hard day for a lot of people. It typically means that the weekend is over, work has started up again, and there is another full five days until the weekend. It can be rocky. In addiction, it can seem like every day is Monday. There is a full workload of recovery ahead. It may include withdrawals, nervous breakdowns, physical exhaustion, and more. It is rocky. And the weekend (sobriety) may feel like it will never come
Lucky for us though, not every day is Monday, and technically, Monday is only one day a week. Addiction recovery can be more like the weekend. It can be happy, inspiring, and beneficial, but that is up to you. If you want that happy and inspiring road to recovery, you are required to have a positive attitude. It may not be possible for everyone, and it may not be as impactful, but everyone can at least try to have a positive attitude in addiction recovery. From there, we will see what happens. If a positive attitude results in a happier you, and a smoother recovery process, you may as well stay positive. If your addiction recovery continues to be rocky, you can still be positive and hopeful, knowing that if you keep working, those sharp rocks of addiction will go away.
So let’s learn how to have a positive attitude. If you have a positive attitude, but your friend or loved one does not, these steps are for you too. You can help your loved one by knowing what is required to be optimistic.
Choose to be positive. That is right. It’s a choice. Life happens, but we react. Actually, we choose to react. Even if certain reactions seem programmed into us, we can still change it. Some things just become habit, but habits can change. Choose to change them.
Do not let yourself get knocked down easily. If you are going to be sad; if you are going to be knocked down, let it be the strongest wind in the world that knocks you over, not a slight breeze. Be strong. Be a force that the wind cannot contend with. An influential public speaker, William J. H. Boetcker, said, “You can’t fly a kite unless you go against the wind and have a weight to keep it from turning a somersault. The same with man. No man will succeed unless he is ready to face and overcome difficulties and is prepared to assume responsibilities.”
Smile, even when it hurts. Keep in mind that if you are physically or mentally hurting, it is important to make sure that you get the help you need to heal or feel better. Sometimes though, pain is something that you have to work your way through. You have to fake it till’ you make it. Your smile may be forced, and the pain of addiction may still be swirling through you, but in the end it may turn out that your smile is no longer forced, but is genuine. You are sober, and you managed to smile your way through it.
Surround yourself with goodness. You cannot control everything, but you can control some things. Make those things happy things. Find a good hobby, make good friends, and do things that will help you be healthy and happy. It could be hiking, reading a good book, listening to music, or simply having a few quiet moments each day. Take the time to be surrounded with good things.
Think of these four steps every day. When simplified, it comes down to choosing to be happy, not getting sad easily, smiling, and doing things that make you happy. If you do these four things, you are well on your way to having a positive attitude. It can be applied in and out of addiction recovery; in and out of rehab.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, Annie’s House is a positive Utah addiction recovery center, where we help you have a positive attitude even on your worst days.