Dr. Cali Estes - The Addiction Coach ®

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The Addictions Coach: Looking Yourself in the Mirror….How Guilt Contributes To Relapse

Looking Yourself in the Mirror….How Guilt Contributes To Relapse


Well here you are on the other end of your drug or alcohol addiction.

I’m talking about the GOOD end.

The end where you are alive and not using anymore. So you made it, right?

Not so fast, my friend.

This is where the work really begins to keep you from relapsing and using drugs or alcohol again. There are all kinds of triggers that could influence you to pick up again. It could be stress, a tragic event, a death close to you. But, one of the most influential triggers that contribute heavily to relapse, is GUILT.

When we are using drugs or alcohol we are experts at “forgetting” all the hurt and destruction we caused while working hard to stay HIGH or DRUNK. We easily turn our heads from our family members crying, or friends hurting, or spouses walking away from relationships while we are using, because the drug takes us away and shields us from the negativity that we caused. The drugs or alcohol were always there to keep us occupied and keep us from looking ourselves in the mirror.

One of the most dangerous parts of getting clean and sober is the first few times we have to look ourselves in the mirror, completely clean and sober. We will suddenly remember all the pain we caused, the people we hurt and the relationships we destroyed. We might remember hurting our own children by letting them down and there will be no drugs or alcohol to “get you through” the pain. This is where we lose a lot of newly clean and sober people because the guilt is too much. They aren’t able to look themselves in the mirror.

People need to realize that this is the time where you need your support system the most. For twelve-steppers, you need to use your sponsors. And for those in treatment or using sober coaches, this is the time where you need your coaches and counselors to help you look into your mirror. The pain is a “warning sign” or a “reminder” to tell you that the situation that you are thinking through wasn’t the correct thing to do. It wasn’t the healthy way to act. And it was destructive to you and your life. Talking about your guilt can only help you work through your issues and make you stronger day by day.

It is IMPERATIVE that we all LOOK OURSELVES IN THE MIRROR when we clean up, but it’s just as IMPORTANT that we don’t do this alone. If you are new in your recovery and feelings of guilt are seemingly too much to bear, please contact us here at Top Recovery Coaches and Life Coaching for Drug and Alcohol Addiction or call us at 1-800-706-0318. You’ve come too far to throw it all away!

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