For most people addiction recovery and creating a sober identity is a process filled with learning, healing, relapses and forward gains. Addressing addictions requires a commit to develop a stronger belief in one's self, since the primitive mind of the addicted/problem user has accepted "addiction/problem user" as an identity.
Building a stronger more confident identity is crucial. Developing a belief in one's own abilities to manage thoughts, feelings and behaviors is important to recovery and should be considered foundational work.
There is no one treatment method that is ideal for all
people. This work supports and recognizes the benefits of all addiction
recovery efforts including-medical intervention, 12 step programs, self-help
and residential treatment. The majority of people who begin this work are not ready to quit
using substances or have a range of clean time with continued relapses. The majority have also made good use of more traditional resources.
One reason that people stagnate in their recovery efforts is a lack of understanding about how the primitive mind operates and holds on to an adopted identity (addict).
The task of the primitive mind is to maintain the status
quo. It prefers paths of least resistance or well-worn, habitual hard-wired
ways of being (aka cow paths). The subconscious mind is not concerned with what is in your best
interest (original potential or a better future) but it can be influenced to
accept and honor new ways of being.
The primitive mind fuels addiction so recovery takes
planning and a willingness to forge an identity that is rooted in being the CEO of one's life..
Living a satisfied, sober life will require new beliefs and behaviors.
- This work recognizes addiction as an experience, not an identity.
Preparing for a sober future requires a willingness to honestly
acknowledge challenges and triggers. It also requires a realistic plan for re-educating
the primitive mind to willingly accept new paths of least resistance (cow paths) and accept a self-image that is congruent with a healthier future..
A customized recovery toolbox allows individuals to prepare
for sobriety on their terms, manage relapses and deal with the challenges that come with influencing the primitive mind to accept new ways of being. The foundation of all toolbox work is self-discovery and building a confident identity.
Terri Lee Cooper MSc RSW