As we embark upon the work needed to recover from our addictions, one of the things we’ll need to do to heal is examine our life patterns. For many of us, our lives have been filled with chaos and confusion due to our addictions. We haven’t had clarity in many different areas of our lives for years. Our lives have been unstable and tumultuous, from our home lives to our finances to our interpersonal relationships. Life and our addiction story can feel like one long, never-ending rollercoaster. At Athens Area Commencement Center, we know this experience well and have helped many people find balance and wellness.

Analyzing Our Life Patterns In Depth

Very often, we move through life afraid to look at ourselves and our problems honestly. We’ve been living out destructive and toxic patterns, much of the time unconsciously. If we want to improve our health and quality of life, we’ll want to become more conscious of our life patterns.

How do we begin to change ourselves and our lives when we live with so much instability and confusion? One answer is to start examining our life patterns in more depth. 

Seeking Blame for Life Patterns

Many of us have a hard time accepting responsibility for our difficult life circumstances, including our patterns of addiction. We look to find fault in other people, for example, blaming our parents for our traumatic childhood experiences or our partners for our unhealthy relationships. Often, we’ll tell ourselves that those traumas or those unhealthy relationship dynamics are the cause of our addictions and the reasons behind why we use them. It can be disheartening to look at our role in the development of our addiction patterns.

Accepting Responsibility for Life Patterns

When we’re ready to start healing from our addictions, we come to realize that our own internal issues, imbalances, and dysfunctions are at the root of our addictions. Several different factors have impacted how our lives have turned out. No one thing or person is to blame, including ourselves, but we have developed specific patterns that have allowed our addictions to flourish. Our life patterns, our emotional patterns, and our behavioral patterns have perpetuated our addictions, often without our realizing it. Without blaming ourselves or anyone else for our addictions, we can begin to take responsibility for our life patterns so that we can do the work to shift them.

Examples of Unhealthy Life Patterns

We might have a life pattern of emotional escapism, where we routinely avoid our challenges with a drug of choice or co-dependent relationship. Many of us have a pattern of being in denial that we even have an addiction. Perhaps we have a pattern of initially getting sober but being unable to stay sober long-term. We might have a life pattern of refusing help when offered to us. Some of us might have a life pattern of blaming other people for our addictions. Others of us might drown ourselves in shame and self-blame and use our addiction as a way of self-medicating to avoid our emotional pain.

The Interconnectedness of Our Life Patterns and Addictions

Sometimes, our life patterns can feel unrelated to our addictions. Perhaps we have a pattern of running from our problems or of being afraid of getting close to people. These patterns might appear in our friendships, romantic or family relationships, or work. If they don’t correspond exactly to our drug of choice, we assume that they don’t have anything to do with our problem with addiction. More often than not, however, everything in our lives is connected to our addiction and vice versa. 

We might be using our drug of choice to cope with a toxic relationship. Our families might see multiple family members struggling with the same unhealthy coping mechanisms over many generations. We might have lost all our friends due to falling-outs between us. Professional progress in our careers might have stalled. 

Whether or not we are conscious of it, chances are the different problems in our lives are due in part to how all-consuming our addictions have become. It can be virtually impossible to maintain healthy relationships, succeed in our careers, or be the friend and family member we want to be when we’ve become so controlled by our drug of choice. 

Making Sense of Our Life Patterns

Looking at our life patterns more closely helps us to dissect how our addictions have impacted all the different areas of our lives. We’re able to see the interconnectedness between our addictions and the different life challenges we’re experiencing. We can make sense of why our lives have played out the way they have and how much addiction has been a part of those recurring life patterns.

Examining our life patterns is one of the many important pieces of our recovery work. Looking at the trajectory of our lives and all its many patterns gives us insight into how to create change. Working with a treatment center like Athens Area Commencement Center can provide the support needed for the hard work of in-depth self-examination. We can only create new, healthier patterns when we’ve addressed and released the unhealthy life patterns holding us back.

Looking at our life patterns can be daunting and overwhelming. It can be hard to come face to face with everything we’ve been through in life. With support, we can summon the courage to examine our life patterns to create new patterns for ourselves. In order to make sure history doesn’t keep repeating itself, we’ll want to face these problematic life patterns head-on. It’s never too late to start again. With help and support, you can look at your life thus far and pivot, shifting your patterns and creating a new life for yourself. Call Athens Area Commencement Center at (706) 546-7355 for more information on how we can help support you.

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