It is often said that willingness, open-mindedness, and honesty are the keys to sobriety. In order to have a meaningful and lasting sobriety a person must possess these three attributes to one extent or the other. Of these three, willingness is probably the most important because, without willingness, not much as else can come to pass.
So how does a person go about getting the willingness to do the work that is required in order to stay sober? Where exactly does the willingness in sobriety come from? While there is no singular answer to this question, majority of people receive willingness from finally coming to understand that they are alcoholics or addicts. This revelation usually results in a newfound respect for the illness that they are up against and with this respect comes the understanding that to not work the Steps and get involved in the program, means an unhappy and addiction filled life.
For those people who are just getting sober and finally admitted to their innermost selves that they have a problem, finding the willingness to continue with the program is usually not that difficult. Sometimes they may drag their feet, especially on the 4th Step, but overall finding willingness in sobriety is fairly easy because they know what the alternative is.
Not wanting to go back out and experience the horrors of a few months ago is a great motivator for willingness in sobriety and it has definitely saved a great many addicts and alcoholics from the lethargy that can set in when getting sober.
The interesting thing is that addiction is so powerful that even after you come to understand that you must work the program or else you will never overcome your addiction, your willingness can wane with extended time in sobriety. What came easy and natural during the first year, may take a concerted effort after a few years and mustering up the willingness to continue to go to meetings and help others is not always easy.
This is a problem that many people face, continuing to have willingness in sobriety. For some people, they don’t make much of an effort to continue to be willing and this is why you do not see many people picking up 5 to 10 year medallions. Something happens around this time period that you see a lot of people who seemed to be involved somehow manage to go out and get drunk again. I can’t say for certain but I believe part of the reason for this is that they forgot where they came from and so they no longer had the willingness to do the work.
After working the Steps and having the obsession and compulsion removed, sobriety really becomes a battle against yourself. It becomes a game of finding new ways to stay motivated and reinvent what recovery means to you while discovering new ways to remain willing.
Keeping it green is something that you hear at many meetings and doing this, especially after being sober for a little bit, is particularly helpful in maintaining your willingness. After you have been sober for some time, your life more than likely improves beyond anything you could have imagined in the past. You may be back in school, or you may be working at a job that you love. Your family is probably back in your life and you or may not have a meaningful relationship. With all of these gifts in your life, it can be very easy to forget that not but a few short years ago your entire life was in shambles and that the 12 Steps saved you from disaster. It is easy to forget this and to begin to think that you no longer have to do the things that got you sober. When this occurs, if you cannot find a way to keep it green, it can be very difficult to get the willingness necessary to continue.
Another way to remain willing in your recovery is to sponsor people. This is a great way to remind you where you came from and also helping others and seeing the program work in their lives is a great motivator to stay active. It is also a good way to stay willing because as a sponsor you can’t necessarily suggest things to your sponsees that you don’t do yourself, and so knowing this is a good way to stay motivated and willing to work the program.
Willingness is most certainly the key to sobriety and it is a gift that is probably proportional to the amount of emotional pain you received before getting sober. So if you find that you have even an inkling of willingness to get sober, explore this option and give it a try. Willingness is funny because it can come and go, so if you feel it in your heart that you may want to try sobriety, don’t procrastinate and get started today.
The Willingness To Go To Treatment
The idea of going to a treatment center can be nerve-wracking and frightening. There is the unknown of how the withdrawals will be and the unknown of what life in sobriety is like. If you are going out of state it can be frightening to have to learn a new city and make new friends, but having the willingness to face all this down and attempt treatment anyway is a great thing.
The reality is that going to treatment is never as bad as we make it out to be in our heads. Anyone who has ever attended a treatment center can attest to this and anyone who has been sober for a period of time will tell you that recovery is a much better way of life than active addiction. Not having to wake up every day and wonder where you will get the money to get your next fix, not having to lie to your loved ones and fear the police is worth the initial uncomfortability of early sobriety.
So if you are a point where you think you may need help with your alcoholism or addiction then call the professionals at Dream Center for Recovery today, at 1-877-978-3148. Our staff is standing by to help, so call today.