In Part One of this article, we investigated how the ego can be a major roadblock to recovery by making it harder for an addict to realize that they need help, and how it can increase their resistance to seeking help as well. In Part Two of Addiction and the Ego, we will address how even if an addict overcomes this block to recovery and undergoes treatment, they must remain vigilant to ego-driven emotions that can undermine treatment and lead to a relapse of self-defeating behaviors, including:
Overconfidence: many addicts emerge from rehab feeling powerful from what they have accomplished. This often leads to an overconfidence that may cause them to associate with people with access to drugs or alcohol. Some recovering addicts may even believe that their addictions are cured, and they can now handle a small amount of the substance they are addicted to.
Hopelessness: sometimes addicts feel hopeless during recovery due to persistent obsession and anxiety. This can quickly lead to feelings of fatalism and potentially a relapse into substance use. Depression can remove the emotional reasons for continued diligence and discipline during recovery. Establishing a healthy balance between overconfidence and hopelessness is one of the most important steps in recovery and achieving it usually requires help.
Pride: it is common for recovering addicts to allow their pride to prevent them from admitting to their ongoing struggle. In moments of temptation, it’s crucial for recovering addicts to reach out for help when they need it. Humility is of the utmost importance.
Shame: can be one of the worst enemies of recovery. It can lead an addict to secrecy and despondency. Having a healthy awareness of personal failure and vulnerability is important, but shame can be toxic.
Impatience: since addiction revolves around instant gratification, the ability to be patient and allow for delayed gratification must be cultivated over time. Unfortunately, that is a quality most addicts lack. Recovering addicts who place themselves in the care of professionals and submit to their treatment will cultivate patience over time.
At White Sands Treatment Center, we understand how powerful ego-driven emotions are, and we know how to help you control them to ensure a lasting recovery. If you are tired of self-defeating behaviors, open yourself up to the advice and guidance of qualified and compassionate experts with personal addiction experience and the knowledge to beat it. Don?t waste another day stuck in a pattern of self-destruction. Let us help you find a future free from addiction.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.