Growth and healing are a continuous process. While we may want our recovery journey to look linear, always progressing and improving, that is not what reality teaches us. Recovery, even when we see ourselves in great shape for long periods of time, sometimes come with low moments. Learning how to accept sudden stumbling blocks can be discouraging, but those moments are what builds and crafts what recovery really looks like.
Accepting the Lows
Recovery is full of ups, downs, highs, lows, and surprises. Some days may seem amazing while others are just awful. What do we do when we are faced with a low moment?
Accepting the changes and slippery slopes of recovery and healing is how we build stamina and emotional resilience. We learn through our low moments who we are when most vulnerable. These moments are the best time to ask ourselves important questions. Questions that can only be asked following hardships.
- What influenced this low point?
- What have I learned?
- How can I prevent this situation from triggering me again?
- Has my mindset changed from my previous low moment?
- Who can I ask for help?
- What are my next steps?
While we naturally experience feelings of defeat and frustration amidst a setback, these moments do not define our recovery journey. Having a bad day, relapsing, or however “low” is defined doesn’t erase the progress that’s already been made. We cannot reverse our recovery progress because of a temporary roadblock. We are still strong, courageous, brave, resilient, and worthy to keep going.
Embracing the Highs
Facing a low moment strengthens our appreciation for high ones — the times where we are at our best. The more we transform and grow from the lows, the better we feel while energized, ambitious, and ready to take on the world. We are able to celebrate and say we got through whatever attempted to bring us down.
Reaching a high point is a result of persevering through low ones. The more we adapt, accept and learn from difficult challenges is the reason we experience our highs.
As people, we witness and encounter situations that trigger us. Being in recovery means some days will be great while others are not. What defines us and who we are, however, is whether we allow the “not so good” days to keep us from progress.
Remember that facing a low point during our recovery journey does not make us weak. Each past struggle gives us the opportunity to learn and grow in self-awareness, self-care, and perseverance. Lows will not last forever.
Next Steps: Tools to Get Through Lows
Every time we find ourselves struggling, we can dig into our bag of tools collected from previous times we experienced and got through a rough patch.
These tools can be:
- New ways to self-care.
- A shift in perspective.
- New resources we found to help in our recovery journey.
- Affirmations and declarations to help us move forward.
- Activities to get our minds in a more workable place to continue moving.
- Creative exercises
- Therapy/Knowing who we can talk to.
Discouraging low points are not the end. We cannot allow our triggers, addictions, or bad habits to get the best of us. We are strong. We are not our struggle and never will be. We can keep going.
Nina is a Latina from Brooklyn, NY who struggles with depression and anxiety. She finds refuge and healing through her writing since she graduated from college in 2016. Nina writes to spread awareness and hope to those who struggle with their mental health silently. She also strives to motivate and encourage self-acceptance. She enjoys creating creative and uplifting content on her blog SparklyWarTanks.com where she shares her experiences, notes, poems, quotes, and articles