Mindfulness and Addictions: How Practicing Mindfulness Can Help Recovering Addicts

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Overcoming an addiction can be one of the hardest battles anyone faces but there are ways to make it a little easier.

Mindfulness and addictions recovery can be powerful tools when combined to make you feel stronger. Together they can help you focus on your goals for the future. 

Keep reading to find out how mindfulness works and why it’s a valuable instrument in the journey to a healthier, happier sober you.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is focusing your awareness on the moment by calmly recognizing and accepting what you’re feeling in body and mind and what you’re thinking.

This sounds great but what does it really mean? How do you practice mindfulness? And how does it help?

Live in the moment

It’s not always easy to stay present. To live in the moment and leave the past behind you. Especially if you’ve been struggling with addiction or the memory of traumatic events in your past.

You can get help here with the issues associated with addictions and trauma.

You may not always be able to stay in the moment but it is possible to return to it. Let go of the stress, guilt, and emotions of the past. This can be achieved through simple exercises of deep breathing, meditation, and focusing on gratitude.

Mindful exercises

Concentrate on your breathing. Every time your mind starts to wander to worries, take deep breaths and say to yourself “Breathe in” as you take a deep breath in and “Breathe out” as you release that breath.

This may sound silly but it helps your mind to focus on this moment, on nothing but your breathing pattern. It also helps you take in more oxygen which will have a calming effect.

Each time you breathe out envision all the negative emotions and thoughts leaving your body. 

Counting Blessings

If feelings of guilt, anxiety, or worry begin to creep into your mind practice your breathing and then start to count your blessings. Picture the people and things you are grateful for. 

Don’t think of anything other than gratitude. Not the problems, feelings, or stresses around each one. Just think about your gratitude for them. With each breath remind yourself of the gratitude you feel for them.

If it is a person. Whether they are in your life now, whether the relationship is damaged, no matter what the situation is, let it go and just feel the gratitude that they exist.

Mindfulness and Addictions

Addictions are often associated with a great deal of guilt or shame. It’s like there’s a recording in your head reminding you of the people you’ve let down. Mindfulness can help you overcome the shame and focus on the gratitude that they are a part of your life.

No one is harder on you than you are. Loved ones want to see you succeed. They want you to be happy. If a person doesn’t want you to be successfully happy then they are not really healthy relationships. Let go of negative feelings and concentrate on the positive.

Be Kind to Yourself

One of the biggest things you can do the make mindfulness and addictions recovery work for you is to be kind to yourself.

Realize that everyone is a work in progress and you are no exception. To learn more about being the best you can be, check out the self-improvement section of our blog.