As active substance abusers, our lives were peppered with conflicts which we were ill-equipped to handle and resolve in a positive manner. Because of the frequency of their occurrence, we did develop some skill at defusing any threats to our continued substance abuse, often at the expense of the health of our relationships with those around us. These unhealthy conflict resolution skills need to be replaced with healthy, productive ones if we are to secure ourselves in sobriety and be successful in recovery.
The most important shift which should take place in our approach to conflict resolution is a willingness to accept responsibility for the part we have played in situations. In our active addiction, we use all sorts of deceptive and manipulative tactics in order to shield ourselves from any blame or responsibility for our actions, redirecting these outwards onto others or declaring ourselves at the mercy of circumstance and without any alternatives. These techniques could hardly be described as conflict resolution at all, as they resolve nothing and only lead to resentments and frayed relationships. Now that you are in sobriety, you need to start accepting responsibility when you have caused harm to another, whether intentionally or otherwise. The sooner you begin owning up to your own faults and shortcomings the sooner you can resolve conflicts with others in a healthy, productive manner which strengthens your relationships.
Another common misguided action undertaken by those in active substance abuse is a repression of our own pain or dissatisfaction with others in our lives. We often fail to voice our hurt feelings in order to avoid unnecessary conflict, as this would also bring attention to our existence and perhaps our ongoing substance abuse. These repressed emotions do not dissipate, instead they fester and lead to the formation of resentments which are poison to the recovery process. You must not let this behavior continue in sobriety, and the best way to avoid this is through building your self-esteem and adhering to the AA principle of rigorous honesty. Remember, your feelings are valid and worthy of expression, and to avoid expressing them would be an act of dishonesty on your part. As you vocalize your feelings to others your boundaries will become better established, and you will find situations which could breed conflict occur less and less in your daily life.
Conflict resolution is an important life skill to have, as interpersonal relationships are rarely free of the occasional hurt feelings or overstepped boundary. In active addition, we develop skills which serve our continued substance abuse at the expense of healthy conflict resolution, leading to resentments and frayed relationships with others. Now that you have transitioned to sobriety, it is important to counter these negative habits head-on, replacing them with healthy, constructive habits which foster healing and progress in your relationships. At Evolutions Treatment Center, one of the therapeutic activities made available to our clients are family sessions designed to confront these bad habits and promote the formation of new, healthy communication skills and conflict resolution techniques. If you or a loved one is seeking help with a substance abuse disorder and could benefit from a holistic approach to treatment which would address their dysfunctionality in relationships, call our Admissions Counselors today at 833-818-3031 so we can help restore sanity to their lives and the lives of those around them!
ABOUT EVOLUTIONS TREATMENT Evolutions is a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center located in beautiful South Florida. Our holistic approach to addiction treatment centers around addressing and healing the underlying issues at the root of addiction, rather than merely medicating symptoms away.
Our treatment program includes individual and group-based therapy to help clients understand and manage their symptoms and emotions.
If you or a loved one is suffering from addiction, alcoholism, or any co-occurring disorders please call us at (833) 818-3031 or visit www.evolutionstreatment.com