Self-defeating behaviors while in addiction recovery can be your own worst enemy. These negative thoughts often happen when faced with stressful situations, such as when working under pressure or getting into an argument with your spouse.
One of the many problems with self-defeating behaviors is that they prevent you from developing a healthy mindset and focusing on solutions. Fortunately, you can learn to identify these negative behaviors so that they do not sabotage your recovery.
Below are some common self-defeating behaviors to avoid after completing outpatient drug rehab.
Blaming is very common among addicts. You might blame yourself for traumatic situations that happened in your childhood. Or, you might blame others for your addiction. Either way, the blaming mentality will only cause you to get trapped inside your addiction.
To avoid this behavior, you’ll need to take accountability for your actions. While you can’t always control what happens to you, you can control how you respond to things.
Guilt is another common self-defeating behavior among people in recovery. But guilt isn’t always bad. It can encourage you to take responsibility and apologize to someone, for instance. But lingering guilt is a problem that can turn into shame.
To prevent yourself from experiencing these non-productive emotions, it’s best to acknowledge the mistakes you’ve made, ask for forgiveness, and make amends. Many things are out of your control and you’ll have to let them go.
3. People Pleasing
If you do things to make other people happy, especially at the cost of your own health and happiness, you’re a people pleaser. This behavior is usually developed in early life as a way to please parents and adults.
In adulthood, people-pleasing behavior can do more harm than good. It’s stressful and can chip away at your own needs. Right now, it’s important to put your recovery first. If you’re having trouble breaking this cycle, be sure to discuss it with your therapist.
Not only can perfectionism lead to substance use problems, but also it can interfere with a healthy recovery. It’s good to set goals for yourself, but perfectionism happens when you set impossibly high standards. When you don’t perform to these standards, you end up feeling like a failure.
Perfectionism can also cause you to constantly seek others’ approval and criticize yourself unnecessarily. Rather than striving for perfection in recovery, work with your therapist to set realistic goals and practice ways to ask for and accept help.
Another self-defeating behavior to address is pride. If you are too proud to admit your mistakes, you’ll easily get stuck in your recovery. Having too much pride prevents you from reaching out for help and admitting when you’re wrong – two things necessary for recovery.
Remember, addiction recovery is an ongoing process. To benefit from this learning and growth, you’ll need to be open to asking others for help and admit when you’ve done something wrong. Make an effort to replace pride with humility.
These are just five self-defeating behaviors that often pop up in recovery – but there are many more! By being aware of this negative thinking, you can be intentional about replacing it with positive thinking. To discuss your journey to recovery, contact Awakenings Treatment Center in Agoura Hills.