We always talk about how we need to remove addictive substances from our lives like alcohol, drugs, or nicotine. While it is important to remove these substances for a healthier lifestyle, what about also trying to replace these drugs with something else that will make you happier instead?
By being more hopeful of the future and thinking happy thoughts, you will have a successful recovery.
A new study in the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment had senior research scientist Bettina B. Hoeppner use a new approach to helping recovering addicts achieve sobriety. The traditional method of sobriety involves figuring out what made you want to do drugs and working through it. While this is a very useful method, it can also be a painful approach as you would need to relive the painful or shameful memories that made you want to substance abuse. Hoeppner asked 500 recovering addicts to complete a series of exercises to see if it will make them happier or not.
The first exercise was called “Reliving Happy Moments” where you select a photo from your life that made you happy and describe what happened in the photo. The second exercise was “Savoring Exercise” where you talk about two positive experiences. The third exercise was “Rose, Thorn, Bud” where you talk about what happened the day before, what went wrong, and what you look forward to in the future. The fourth exercise was “Three Good Things” where you talk about three good things that happened to you yesterday. The final exercise “Three Hard Things” is talking about all of the challenges you dealt with yesterday.
Of all of these exercises, “Three Good Things” and “Three Hard Things” led to poor results and a decrease in happiness. The other three exercises, on the other hand, helped the recovering addicts in being happy. This proves that a vital part of helping others recover from substance abuse is all about thinking happy thoughts. Psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky says that 40% of our happiness is genetically predetermined but 10% of it is based on life experiences. This means that 40% of your happiness is in your control and that should not be ignored. Instead of focusing so much on the bad moments, think of the great moments that you had with your loved ones and find things to look forward to in order to encourage you to follow a life of sobriety.
Located in Huntington Beach, California, Simple Recovery’s mission is to help clients struggling with addiction and mental illness to face their fears, understanding your addiction, and inspiring them to realize how achievable a sober life can be. With the help of a staff with first-hand recovery experience, this evidence-based treatment program includes different modes of recreational therapy for clients and their families in the beautiful surf-city environment. For more information, please call us 888-743-0490 as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.