Motivation, Acceptance, Grit, and Gratitude
The 4 keys to Long-term Sobriety
One can list many motivations to not drink alcohol. After a period of sobriety, one of the biggest motivations I use is “thinking it through”. What will happen if I ever do drink an alcoholic beverage? I play the whole movie in my head and it never ends well. After 2 years of sobriety the thought of having an alcoholic drink doesn’t come into my head much at all, but this motivation is what I come back to every time and it works for me. It helps to right down a whole list of motivations and look at them every now and then.
After 2 years of sobriety I still accept that I won’t drink alcohol again. Being sober is my new way of life now and I accept what comes with that. I accept that I am strong enough to feel real feelings and not need alcohol to numb them. I allow myself to feel grief of not being able to drink, or jealousy that others can drink and I can’t. I feel those feelings and move on. I allow my feelings to happen and not feel guilty about them or that they are wrong.
Having the character of Grit helps me maintain my never-ending goal of sobriety. I have the perseverance and tenacity to pursue my goal of sobriety through failures, disappointments and hardships. Grit is a key to success in any goal you are pursuing. It is so easy to give up or ask yourself if sobriety is worth it. It is worth it if you don’t want to be on your deathbed. You are stronger than you think. Sobriety can be a seemingly long, tiresome, emotional process with new things popping up that you don’t expect and have to deal with. Its ok to feel frustrated about it. You will also learn new things and new insights that will add tools to help you progress through this process and down the road you will turn around one day and see how far you have come. Be proud of your successes weather its 30 days or 6 months of sobriety. Reward yourself.
Gratitude. Maybe you can’t drink alcohol any more, but there is so much you have and so much you can do with your life. Write them down. Look at all the things you have to be grateful for. And what new things would you be interested in trying now that you are not spending so much time and money on booze? When I first got sober, I did not have much gratitude. I was more angry that I could not drink anymore and getting myself in that position in the first place. After 2 years of being sober, I have so much to be grateful for. Having gratitude is comforting and brings a sense of peace and happiness in my life.