Factors Facilitating Addiction Recovery

In my last blog post, The Nature of Addiction Recovery, I finished by saying that I would describe the key factors that facilitate recovery from addiction in today’s blog post. In fact, I’m going to summarise these factors and provide links to my relevant blog posts of 2022 which provide much more detail. The descriptions linked to have come from a chapter of my eBook Our Recovery Stories: Journeys from Drug and Alcohol Addiction.

Hope: This hope is based on a sense that life can hold more for one than it currently does, and it inspires a desire and motivation to improve one’s lot in life and pursue recovery.

Empowerment: To move forward, recovering people need to have a sense of their own capability, their own power.

Self-Responsibility: Setting one’s own goals and pathways, taking one’s own risks, and learning one’s own lessons are essential parts of a recovery journey.

A Sense of Belonging: People recovering from addiction need to feel the acceptance, care and love of other people, and to be considered a person of value and worth.

(Gaining) Recovery Capital: Recovery capital is the quantity and quality of internal and external resources that one can bring to bear on the initiation and maintenance of recovery.

Mutual Support: People in recovery stress the importance of having someone believe in them, particularly when they don’t believe in themselves.

Involvement in Meaningful Activities: May involve employment or volunteering, engagement in hobbies or other leisure activities, or connecting with other organisations or groups.

Understanding: People with substance use problems and those on a recovery journey need to understand that addiction is generally a symptom of a deeper underlying problem.

Gaining a Postitive Identity: At the heart of most successful decisions to exit drug misuse is the recognition by individuals that their identities have been seriously damaged by their addiction and the lifestyle that accompanies it.

Overcoming Stigma: Stigma can create feelings of shame, blame, self-disgust, self-hatred and hopelessness, and impact badly on self-esteem and self-efficacy.

Overcoming Withdrawal Symptoms: After stopping long-term use of substances, a person might experience withdrawal effects which can be irritating, debilitating and even life-threatening.