by Kyle Beard on Wednesday, September 16th, 2015
Last week’s blog looked at how 12 Step programs help participants better understand their addiction and how community can be a major help overcoming addiction. One of the catch phrases often used in 12 Step communities is, “It works if you work it, so work it cause you’re worth it.” It’s a catchy phrase. The simplicity of this saying can easily cloud the foundational truth that is embodied within: recovery takes hard work.
The 21st century American culture embodies the beliefs of instant gratification, endless options, and the idea that everything is disposable and replaceable. This mentality has led to many of the greatest scientific and technological innovations in history. Yet these innovations, such as the iPhone, Wikipedia, and online Group Think, did not show up overnight. Through hours, days, weeks, and years of hard work, something great resulted.Recovery from addiction functions the same way.
An instant cure for addiction does not exist because the root of addiction is different for each individual. Digging into one’s character, thought processes, past experiences, and worldview not only takes time, but great courage to face the answers one will find along the way. Twelve Step and other addiction programs function to help individuals face these deeper realities in order to change the flawed truths that feed addiction. Introspection, reflection, and hard truths are the powerful ingredients of recovery that many are too afraid to face.
I once had a client ask if there was an injection to cure sex addiction. He offered $30,000 cash if it existed. He wanted the easy way out, where years and decades of unhealthy living would be wiped away in an instant. True recovery doesn’t work this way. Recovery works, if you work it, and nothing else. You are attempting to change decades of habits, thought processes, and perspectives on life, in order to find what is truly healthy and beneficial for you. This is no small task! The age old saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day” applies perfectly in this instance. If one desires to build a truly healthy, enjoyable, happy life, it takes effort and time. Recovery isn’t for the faint at heart; it’s for the determined desiring to thrive.