Making the hard work of recovery more attractive for those with substance use disorders PMC

Posted by on Nov 21, 2022 in Sober living

motivation for change in recovery

Recovering from addiction is not only a test of strength, determination, surrender, but also perseverance which is often cultivated by motivation. One possibility is that our treatments focus too much on reducing substance use, and not enough on linking clients to reinforcers that will make abstinence more appealing. The effectiveness of almost all interventions for SUD is dependent on clients continuing to want to stop or sharply reduce use. Hope for a better life can also sustain motivation, including the belief that one will be happier and more fulfilled when abstinent, will have better employment opportunities, and will be more likely to be a “success” in adult roles. In summary, motivation can be sustained to the degree that an individual continues to believe that staying abstinent will be worth the struggle it entails.

Self-Motivation: Why it Makes a Difference in Recovery and Life

Moreover, mutual help programs give participants the opportunity to help others, which can be highly rewarding. However, as has been widely noted, most individuals with substance use disorders do not engage in mutual help programs, which highlights the need for a variety of recovery incentives in the community. The road to addiction recovery can be a long journey, as you may experience obstacles and setbacks that make lasting life transformation difficult to attain. It can be hard to find healthier coping strategies when stress, tough circumstances, or triggers arise, for example.

  • Replace self-defeating beliefs with empowering ones, like understanding that recovery is a lifelong process with highs and lows.
  • If you are seeking recovery because you personally want to obtain a better life and push through any mental health issues that have been holding you down, then you are intrinsically motivated.
  • Whether you are in the initial stages of recovery from a substance use disorder and addressing mental health issues or navigating the long road of maintaining sobriety, understanding the importance of motivation is key.

How to Stay Motivated During Recovery

  • Everyone has their own unique sources of motivation, ranging from personal ambitions to external rewards.
  • There have been at least two behavioral economics studies that evaluated interventions specifically designed to increase substance-free or pleasant activities (43,44), and both yielded positive effects on substance use outcomes.
  • Sometimes it is only after several relapses that a person discovers what recovery from an addiction means for them.
  • Finding and keeping the self-motivation to enter into and stay in recovery is vital to success.

This paper presents two recommendations on how to improve treatment engagement and long-term outcomes for those with SUD. First, treatments should go beyond a focus on reducing or eliminating substance use to target greater access to and more time spent in experiences that will be enjoyable or otherwise rewarding to clients. Second, there must be sufficient incentives in the environment to justify the effort needed to sustain long-term abstinence for individuals who often have limited access to such incentives. A great way to stay motivated is to set both short-term and long-term goals. Setting goals and having “checkpoints” can keep you on track and give you rewarding feelings of accomplishment and progress toward a goal.

motivation for change in recovery

Staying Motivated While in Recovery from Substance Abuse

motivation for change in recovery

Realizing substance abuse has lasting effects on physical and mental health can help people prioritize their well-being and make changes towards sobriety. This knowledge helps to highlight the importance of abstaining from drugs or alcohol to avoid further damage. Recognizing addiction’s severe consequences motivates individuals to stay committed during recovery.

motivation for change in recovery

In addition, behavioral activation, a treatment developed for depression that is focused on increasing participation in enjoyable activities, has shown initial promise in the treatment of substance use disorders (45,46). Recent understanding of the key role motivation plays in addiction treatment has led to the development of clinical interventions to increase client motivation to change their substance use behaviors (DiClemente et al., 2017). Linking this new view of motivation, the strategies found to enhance it, and the SOC model, along with recovery motivation an understanding of what causes change, creates an effective motivational approach to helping clients with substance misuse and SUDs. This approach encourages clients to progress at their own pace toward deciding about, planning, making, and sustaining positive behavioral change. Staying motivated in addiction recovery is essential for achieving long-term success and leading a healthy, fulfilling life. Recovery is a lifelong commitment, and staying resilient and motivated in the face of challenges is the key to a happier, healthier future.

In today’s world there are more and more opportunities to connect and interact with recovery communities. Of course, there are the traditional AA/ NA and Celebrate Recovery meetings, but there are also several other options. Many online social media communities allow you to connect and interact with other recovering addicts from all over the world. Additionally, there are online meetings and interactive chat sessions one can participate in to stay connected. And staying connected is a sure-fire way of staying motivated as you set out on a lifelong recovery journey. By taking the leap into recovery, you have already made the hardest move.

Internal motivators include our own feelings, desires, values, and goals for ourselves and our lives. On the other hand, external (or extrinsic) motivation is driven by external rewards, explains External rewards can be positive, such as good grades, a physical award or trophy, or even praise from others. Yet these external rewards can also be based on avoiding negative consequences, such as going to prison, receiving a fine, or being punished or shamed by others.

  • In the past, addiction treatment consisted of detoxification, inpatient rehabilitation, long-term rehabilitation in residential settings, and aftercare.
  • Because MI is so much more flexible and multifaceted, it is more widely used.
  • Listen to Greenhouse Treatment Center‘s Gary Malone, MD discuss the role of therapy in addiction treatment.
  • The good news is that even those who relapse can return to contemplation and move through the stages again.
  • Resistance is a characteristic of “unmotivated” clients in addiction treatment (Connors et al., 2013).
  • It serves as a driving force, pushing individuals to their recovery path.
  • This can be a sponsor in a 12-step program, a trusted family member or friend who holds you responsible.
  • Work on identifying mechanisms of cognitive and behavioral change has led to a greater understanding of how treatments work (7).
  • As many as 45 percent of participants in the National Prevalence Survey resolved their substance use problems through participation in mutual-aid support programs (Kelly et al., 2017).
  • In a very real way, your brain becomes wired for self-harm, craving that which is destroying you.
  • By keeping a journal, blog, or video-blog, you can more easily see the progress and growth of your journey, making staying motivated an easier task.
  • If a song is playing, turn the radio off, if you get a text from an old friend with whom you used to use substances, consider blocking the number.

It’s essential to understand why one has an addiction and how overcoming it aligns with personal values and aspirations. Finally, MET is flexible and adaptable to different stages of readiness for change. It recognizes that individuals may vary in their motivation levels and stage of change.

motivation for change in recovery

Stay Accountable and Monitor Progress


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