Beyond Detox: Addiction Warriors Share the Surprising Benefits of Rehabilitation and Finding a Forever Recovery
Guest post written by Amanda Bartow of Recognition Works.
It’s tricky to know what to expect when you enter addiction treatment — and unfortunately, there is still a lot of stigma surrounding addiction, so many people are reluctant to reach out for help when they’re struggling.
We spoke to graduates of rehabilitation programs from across the country, and they told us that detox is only the first step, and it’s one worth taking! What comes afterward is self-discovery, understanding, and finally, transformation.
Here are a few of their insights on the many benefits they experienced.
Rehab helps you find yourself.
While addicts may have much in common, no one’s situation is exactly like anyone else’s. It’s important to find a program that helps you examine your own habits and patterns, and according to Tara, it was moral reconation therapy (MRT) that helped her take a closer look.
“My favorite part was the MRT program. It taught me so much about myself,” she said. “It's not just your typical 12-step program. It doesn't focus on your drug — it really focuses on you. It taught me about me and helped me find myself again.”
Rehabilitation can even help you regain your spirituality and connect you to a higher power.
“We did baptisms,” Alex told us. “I didn't plan on getting baptised the day I did at all, but something spoke to me and told me, ‘Go ahead. Go through with it. Go into the water.’ And it was a really refreshing experience. It was like an old piece of me died and a new heart was beginning.”
It helps you recognize problems you may not have been aware of — then teaches you to address them.
A good program encourages you to dig deep to find the root of your substance abuse. In your self-exploration, you may even discover issues you never realized you had. Scott said his addiction treatment experience in Michigan helped him overcome his underlying rage and find better ways to cope.
“Anger management helped a lot. I didn't realize how I had built up a lot of anger, and dealing with that is going to help me make better decisions in life,” he reflected. “The holistic track really helped me reach outside of my mental thinking and to put my thoughts aside and think a little more about what's important.”
It helps you become the person you truly want to be.
Whether or not we struggle with an addiction, we all have room to grow and better ourselves — but that doesn’t mean it’s always easy. Wesley said rehab helped him tackle that challenge and prepare for the road ahead:
“My favorite part, although it was hard for me, was to take an opportunity to give my growth some consideration,” he said. “I've gained some tools, some insight, some awareness to be able to not misplace hostility on people who have nothing to do with what is going on inside my head. I'm not scared because I've been prepared for the inevitable, and that is to take back my life.”
Although it can feel like a scary step to take, deciding to seek professional help for an addiction issue can not only be lifesaving, but also life-changing in many wonderful ways. And if you choose to visit a rehabilitation facility, you can have a lot of say in which type of program is best for you. But one thing is certain: no matter what kind of sobriety journey you pursue, you will be on your way to your best life once you take the brave step to get healthy.