When you’re on the addiction recovery path, you may find yourself on a roller coaster ride of emotions. One day everything will be going alright and the next you may be facing some heavy emotions or daunting situations. If you’re going through detox or the early days of recovery, some days may feel super tough and you wonder if you’re going to make it.
No doubt you want to make it. You want to crush that addiction and create the kind of life you truly want. You want to get to a place where you can face your days with peace of mind, feeling confident that whatever happens, you can handle it.
Finding a method or tool that brings you peace of mind ought to be among one of your highest priorities as you travel the recovery journey.
Isn’t that what we all want? Peace?
There’s no doubt about that. Peace – and joy – are the two feelings we all crave very much.
There’s a type of psychotherapy called Mindfully Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) that can help you experience more of those positive feelings. Alcohol and drug treatment centers use well-known therapies to treat addiction, such as cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) and the 12 Step programs. However, more and more are now using MBCT and getting good results.
MBCT is a common treatment when it comes to emotional and mental well-being, combining cognitive therapy and mindfulness practices. The therapy provides tools that enable you to achieve peace of mind by becoming mindful or aware of the present moment. Essentially, it can help you break the negative cycle of thoughts that have been affecting you in negative ways.
For example, if you’ve been caught up in a story in your mind that says, “I’m no good. I’m not worthy to live a life where I can feel peace and joy,” then you’re likely in for a rough recovery road. It’s those exact thoughts that need targeted and addressed, so you can begin to “feel” better. A good MBCT therapist can help you laser in on those negative thoughts and ultimately, “delete” them by helping you learn how to stay in the present moment.
The consensus is that if you are mindful of the “now”, you aren’t caught up in the past or the future. You’re not regretting the past or worrying about the future, which can help eliminate a lot of mental suffering.
The core job of an MBCT therapist is to listen and really hear what you’re saying, but not focus entirely on your stories of the past. They may briefly engage with the past, but their key focus is on teaching you how to become mindful of the present. This may include breathing techniques. MBCT is unique in that it teaches that every person can use mindfulness to enjoy a happier, more peaceful life.
Plenty of individual therapists and mental health agencies use MBCT to help clients. Addiction treatment centers also use it combined with other therapies. MBCT is most effective on those who show symptoms of rumination, chronic worry and anxiety. It teaches you how to judge your thoughts and feelings less. You’ll be encouraged to spend less time wondering, “what if” and more time accepting what’s going on in each moment as it presents itself.
Learning to become more aware of your thoughts and practicing mindfulness can be very beneficial to your daily life. The following are some benefits of MBCT:
If you’re on the addiction recovery path or thinking about entering an addiction recovery treatment program, know that there are plenty of evidence-based treatments that can help you. MBCT is simply one tool of many that can help you overcome addiction and go on to lead a life marked with more peace and joy.
If you need help, simply reach out. We’re here to assist you along your journey.