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Resilience traits in overcoming addictions

Most people experience challenges in their lifetime, but few compare to those faced by someone with a substance use disorder.

Many factors affect people's mental health and undertaking risky behaviors, among which one frequently studied 

factor is resilience. Resilience has been defined as the ability to resist stress and bounce back to normal homeostasis state (Werner, 1986; 2004). 

Evidence suggests that resilient people have a better mental health status; have greater self-regulatory skills; 

higher self-esteem; greater parental support; and are less likely to get involved in high-risk behaviors such as drug 

abuse (Buckner, Mezzacappa, & Beardslee, 2003; Cuomo, Sarchiapone, Giannantonio, Mancini, & Roy, 2008; Wallace, 1999). 

It seems that self-disclosure, problem solving skills, and people's positive appraisal of their social support enhance their resilience (Bonanno, Galea, Bucciareli, & Vlahov, 2007). Moreover, resilience is related to positive emotions that, in turn, play a protective role against depression and substance use after a crisis (Fredrickson, 2003; Bonanno et al., 2007). 

Although resilience shelters people when exposed to distress, to gain and maintain a happy life they also need to succeed in achieving their daily goals. According to the motivational model of substance abuse (Cox & Klinger, 2004), people are likely to resort to chemicals, if they cannot maintain a sense of gratification or contentment that is unrelated to using substances. People who successfully set, pursue, and achieve substance unrelated goals feel more satisfied and hence less in need of manipulate their mood and affect via substance use. People's goal related strategies that affect their chances of success or failure is termed motivational structure. 

An adaptive motivational Addiction is a powerful disease. Recovery is rewarding, but it is not without its pitfalls. When you face adversity in addiction recovery, one of the best tools that you can access is the power of resiliency.

What Is Resiliency?

The term “resilience” is derived from the Latin word “resilio,” which means to jump or bounce back. Resilient people possess a certain degree of strength that allows them to accomplish several things. First, they can accept reality as it is. Second, they have a deep belief that life has meaning. Third, they can improvise.

How Resilience Can Play a Role in Addiction Recovery

Resiliency allows people to step back briefly, regroup and move forward. No matter how long you stay away from harmful substances, there may be some unexpected surprises. While these surprises can lead to stress, they do not have to result in a return to using if you have developed some useful emotional wellness tools.

Some of the ways to build resilience in recovery include:

Learn from the past: Experience is an amazing teacher. Use your insight to look back at how you handled past situations either successfully or poorly. Let this guide your future behavior. Also, do not forget all of the triumphs in addiction recovery that you have experienced.

Accept that change will happen: Change can be difficult, but it is inevitable in life. Resiliency involves being able to adapt more quickly to changing conditions.

Have a support system: People are usually stronger in numbers. You can develop a support system and use it to help you get through difficult times. You might find that you can handle anything when this group has your back.

Emphasize self-care: Skimping on self-care in the midst of a crisis would be a mistake. In recovery, you can learn to take care of your own needs first by eating and sleeping right and building resilience through such things as meditation and exercise.

Be grateful: Instead of focusing on something stressful, remember everything that is wonderful about your life now. Make it a daily practice to create a gratitude list.

Resilience can play a vital role in your life in addiction recovery. 

Use the Power of Resilience to Get Help Now: Even if you have yet to seek help for a substance use disorder, you are stronger than you may realize. The fact that you are still here and want something better for yourself speaks volumes.

To seek for help in overcoming any form of addiction or stressed issues, reach out to me in the comment session

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Beardslee Cuomo Giannantonio Mancini Mezzacappa


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