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When someone is caught up in the cycle of addiction, they tend to live in a world of despair and without hope. The key to helping addiction sufferers get past their addiction is to get them closer to feelings of hope and serenity.
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April 15, 2022
In several 12-Step Groups, the "Serenity Prayer" has a significant meaning. In fact, there are many such groups that will either begin or end their 12-Step meetings by reciting the beginning of this prayer as follows:
"God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference."
In essence, this is sort of a mantra that addiction sufferers can site as a means of grounding themselves. What this brings to mind is whether or not there are other mantras that might exist that would be of benefit to addiction sufferers.
In the following sections, we want to bring to light 9 mantras we believe are relevant within the addiction treatment community. We will count the Serenity Prayer as Manta number one.
It is our belief that all of these mantas speak directly to the human spirit by shining a light on what is right and true. We feel addiction sufferers can benefit from speaking these mantras as a reminder that their addiction, though physically real, is based on emotional untruths about what lies in their hearts and souls.
"As you age, you’ll learn to value your time, genuine relationships, meaningful work, and peace of mind, much more. Little else will matter."
Addiction sufferers tend to lose valuable time from their lives while basking in the turmoil of addiction. This mantra is intended to serve as a reminder that our time on Earth is valuable and limited. We can ill-afford to waste it on the likes of drugs or alcohol.
"Don’t lower your standards, but do remember that removing your expectations of others is the best way to avoid being derailed by them."
For a lot of addiction sufferers, it's the battle against self-expectations and the expectations of others that often leads them to the cycle of addiction. This mantra focuses on keeping expectations reasonable and not letting the expectations of others drive oneself into turmoil.
"Effort is never wasted, even when it leads to disappointing results. For it always makes you stronger, more educated, and more experienced."
Sometimes, recovering addicts relapse. It's common and a simple reality of the addictive personality. This mantra can serve as a reminder that the best course of action after a relapse is to pick oneself up and try again to beat the addiction.
"The most effective way to move away from something you don’t want is to move toward something you do want, gradually and consistently."
We feel it's the absence of goals that tend to allow addiction sufferers to get lost in the cycle of addiction. In our Hollywood Hills Recovery facility, we work with our clients to help them create goals for the future. We feel a client who is directed towards a very specific goal is more likely to stay on the path of recovery.
"Use pain, frustration, and inconvenience to motivate you rather than annoy you. You are in control of the way you look at life."
Yes, there is a lot of pain and suffering that goes hand-and-hand with drug and alcohol addiction. Through the use of this mantra, we hope our clients will be able to see their addictive behavior as a reason to do better in the future as opposed to simply accepting it as a permanent condition of their lives.
It is what it is. Accept it, learn from it, and grow from it. It doesn’t matter what’s been done; what truly matters is what you do from here."
Consistently, we see clients struggle with the fact that they have an addiction. Instead of accepting and then working towards dealing with it, they tend to deny it even exists. This mantra serves as a reminder that acceptance of an addiction is the very first step towards a full recovery.
"Never assume that you are stuck with the way things are right now. Life changes every single second, and so can you."
When we speak of acceptance, we don't mean addiction sufferers should just accept their addiction as a normal part of life. We want them to use this mantra as a reminder that addiction is an illness and not a normal part of life. Change is always possible as long as the addiction sufferer has a breath remaining in their body.
"I am in control of my life."
Addiction suffers constantly complain about not having control of their lives and behaviors. The reality is that it's the addiction that is telling them they have no control. This mantra, when stated often, should help addiction sufferers remember who really has control over their lives
"I am at peace with everything that has happened and will happen."
Several of the aforementioned mantras make mention of acceptance. Accepting addiction is a very important part of the addiction treatment process. As this mantra states, acceptance includes more than accepting what has happened in the past. It's also about accepting what will happen in the future. We feel this mantra is speaking directly to how addiction sufferers will need to deal with temptation and their triggers in the future. A person at peace with their struggles is far more likely to cope with their struggles in a more beneficial and effective way.