When healing from a mental health issue as challenging as addiction, a large part of our recovery entails creating mindset shifts that support our healing. Adopting a mindset of self-empowerment can encourage and motivate us as we work to heal. Very often, without even realizing it, we’ve developed limiting beliefs that inform how we think and feel about ourselves and that contribute to our addictive patterns.

Beliefs and Addictive Behaviors

Especially as related to our addictions, these beliefs can hinder our progress in our recovery. Our limiting beliefs can contribute to behaviors that are self-sabotaging, self-harming, and self-destructive, thereby fueling our addictions and keeping us from getting well. Over time, these beliefs can become self-fulfilling prophecies. We find ourselves living out one of our greatest fears, the fear of never recovering from addiction.

Self-Doubt: Mindset Shifts

With addiction, many of these fear-based beliefs present themselves as self-doubt, namely doubt in ourselves and our ability to recover. Our self-doubt can come from feelings of unworthiness and inadequacy. We might doubt our chances of sobriety after experiencing a relapse. Family members struggling with addiction may have tried unsuccessfully to get sober, convincing us that we can’t overcome our addictions just as they couldn’t. 

Dominant Limiting Beliefs: Understanding the Need for Mindset Shifts

The dominant beliefs we hold about our addictions might be that we are doomed to suffer from years of subconscious self-punishment and a lack of self-forgiveness. We might believe that we are powerless to recover. Perhaps we tell ourselves that we are weak and unable to stay sober. Our self-talk might be full of admonishment, criticizing ourselves, and accusing ourselves of not trying hard enough. 

Many of us have been conditioned to believe that “addiction is a moral failing” and that we are, therefore, bad people. Very often, we believe we don’t deserve to be happy. We might repeatedly replay our regrets and mistakes in our minds, a constant form of self-punishment because we haven’t yet forgiven ourselves. 


When we don’t believe in ourselves and our ability to get sober, we will constantly sabotage our progress. Our goals are derailed, often unconsciously. We work against ourselves. At the root of our self-destructive behaviors are our core beliefs rooted in self-doubt. Without a strong sense of self-belief, we might be unable to stay committed to our long-term recovery.

Core Beliefs

Playing out in these mental and emotional patterns are core beliefs that those of us struggling with addiction are weak and incapable, immoral and degenerate, unworthy and undeserving. The more we believe these things about ourselves, the more we unknowingly block our recovery.

Self-Love and Self-Empowerment Mindset Shifts

How do we shift our mindset from self-doubt to self-empowerment? Is it possible to create an energy of self-love that can replace our feelings of unworthiness? 

Becoming Conscious: Creating Mindset Shifts

The first step is to become conscious of how we’re talking to ourselves. What words are you saying to yourself? How are you talking to yourself (and others) about yourself? What adjectives do you use to describe yourself? How do you make yourself feel? Do you love yourself? What do you believe about yourself and your addiction? Do you believe you can recover? 

Choosing Our Thoughts Intentionally: Effective Mindset Shifts for Recovery

We often operate unconsciously, thinking of thoughts and feeling emotions without being conscious of them. Our recovery will ask us to start choosing our thoughts and feelings more carefully and with more intention. We learn with practice that we can initiate our thoughts intentionally. For years, we’ve felt overpowered by our addictive urges and compulsions, all the addictive behaviors and patterns we’ve been living. We were overcome by our recurring thoughts and the emotional patterns of our addictions, the self-loathing and shame, the fear and anxiety. 

As part of our recovery, we learn that we can actually choose how we think and feel. This means we can choose to think and feel differently about ourselves, our lives, and our addictions. Along with choosing our thoughts and emotions more intentionally, we can be more conscious about our behaviors and life choices. 

We can choose to reach out for help, such as finding a support group or enrolling in a treatment center like Athens Area Commencement Center. Support has a way of reaching us when we’re ready for it. Intentionally creating mindset shifts can help us to summon that support.

Repeating Affirmations: Mindset Shifts Needed for Recovery

One of the most effective, easiest ways to create mindset shifts is through affirmations. When working to change our mindset, we can reprogram our beliefs by repeating affirmations. The more we practice a new belief, the more we believe it to be true. As many of us have experienced, our beliefs can help to shape our life experiences. Throughout our experience with addiction, the beliefs we’ve carried about ourselves have kept us from believing in ourselves and reaching out for help. 

Self-affirmation can help us to recover from even life’s hardest challenges, including our addictions. You can use these affirmations, and any others that resonate with you, to help create mindset shifts to replace self-destructiveness with self-empowerment:

Our mindsets can dictate whether or not we reach out for help, whether or not we recover successfully, and whether or not we believe in ourselves. At Athens Area Commencement Center, we have members of our staff who are also in recovery, who can relate to your experience, and who can help you to create mindset shifts for a successful recovery.

Our mindset can perpetuate our addiction, or it can fuel our recovery. We get to decide. How we talk to ourselves is everything. It’s never too late to shift your mindset from self-doubt to self-empowerment. Believe in yourself and your recovery. Surround yourself with support. You have the power to recover, and you can summon that power by loving and believing in yourself. At Athens Area Commencement Center, we offer customized treatment plans, effective treatment programs, and specialized therapeutic modalities designed to support you in your recovery. The journey of recovery starts with loving yourself enough to reach out for help. Call (706) 546-7355 today to take the first step.

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