Self-respect is having confidence in yourself and a sense of self-worth. It’s the motivation behind honorable and dignified actions. The deeper one’s sense of self-worth is, the more likely they are to make choices that stem from this healthy mindset.
Certain choices we make, however, can damage our self-respect – not to mention the negative effect experiences, peers and outside influences can have on our sense of self-worth. Addiction, in particular, can lead to a decreased sense of self-worth and self-respect. When journeying through recovery, therapists make a point to help you rebuild your sense of self-worth in order to increase your self-respect.
How to regain self-respect
Building up your self-worth is no small undertaking, but it is a noble and admirable one. Of course, the exercises and homework you’re given in addiction treatment will help boost self-respect, but there are a number of small habits you can implement in your life to begin boosting your self-respect on your own.
1. Start with a clean slate
When you reflect on the life you lived under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you may feel shame, guilt or regret. And while these feelings are normal, you shouldn’t let them overpower you, nor should you dwell on them for too long. Consider beginning your recovery journey by wiping your slate clean — that is, take responsibility for the actions you regret.
Apologize to friends or family members, make amends for misdeeds and work to rebuild relationships that may have been damaged as a result of the addiction. This will not only provide you with a supportive community during addiction treatment but will lessen any guilt you may be experiencing.
2. Take care of yourself
Develop a daily self-care routine. Cooking yourself clean and healthy meals, getting in daily exercise, adhering to a sleep schedule and drinking plenty of water should be on the list of self-care tasks every day. Not only will this help you get on a more regulated routine, but it will also allow you to become more in tune with the needs of your body, which, in turn, can increase the respect you have for it. In the end, the ultimate benefit of taking care of yourself is an increased sense of self-respect.
3. Learn to relax and have fun
Early recovery can be difficult, and it’s usually a time of emotional turmoil due to the dramatic nature of the lifestyle change. But it’s also a time to discover new interests and/or hobbies to take the place of the time you spent using drugs or alcohol. You could join a sports league, take a cooking or dance class, go on group hikes or help out at local charities. The possibilities are endless. Plan to fill your free time with interesting and healthy activities, so boredom doesn’t creep in and tempt you to fall back into old habits.
4. Practice mindfulness
Avoiding relapse is a focal point of long-term recovery. Practice mindfulness to keep up your awareness of emotions and situations that act as relapse triggers. Use meditation to help you relax and relieve anxieties. Make gratitude a part of your daily routine to focus your thoughts on how far you’ve come and how beneficial the lifestyle changes have been for your overall health and wellness.
Rebuilding your self-respect during recovery
Before others respect you, you have to learn to respect yourself. As you keep up the good work by taking care of yourself, challenging yourself with healthy activities, partaking in leisure and practicing mindfulness, you’re building a lifestyle that fosters self-respect. The bonus is that you’ll also gain the respect of others. When others see your strength in recovery, they’ll respect you for it.
Taking on the challenge of recovery
Recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction not only takes a toll on your physical health, it drastically impacts your mental health in numerous negative ways. Often, your sense of self-respect suffers from an addiction, but, thankfully, can be restored with the proper treatment plan.
If you find yourself in need of addiction treatment, reach out to Real Recovery today. With numerous treatment programs ranging from more intense to less supervised levels of care, you’re sure to find the right program to meet your needs. Learn more by contacting Real Recovery today on our website or by calling 855-363-7325.