Positive Identity Development: Learning to Define Yourself without Alcohol

man sitting on park bench - identity

By Sandy Baker

More Than Just Sobriety

Alcohol and drug treatment programs are designed to provide you with more than just the ability to rid your body of toxins. A big component of what you will do revolves around determining who you are without the substances in your system.

One of the ways we work on this at The Ranch at Dove Tree is by helping you with positive identity development. The process, which works alongside other treatments, including healthy coping skills and the power of choice, can help you to create a new life that you’re proud of and that you enjoy.

Addressing Your Underlying Issues

As a complex brain disorder, alcoholism can create significant changes in your life. Many times, the impact of long-term alcohol use causes physical, psychological, and emotional damage. It also causes spiritual upheaval and nutritional deficiencies. All of this works against you.

It’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed and not like yourself. You may find that you don’t even know who you are any longer. Many people facing alcoholism are also dealing with poor self-esteem and a belief that they are not as important as others. That’s one of the key reasons we work with you to create a positive identity. Our goal is always to help you to foster a new version of yourself that you like.

Who Are You without Alcohol?

Identity is a complex thing that even a healthy person can struggle with defining. With addiction, many people are left wondering who they are without alcohol. What do people know of you? Do they believe you to be a fun-loving person? Perhaps they know you as the go-getter at work?

More often than not, alcohol can begin to be a part of your identity when you rely on it for daily life. Soon, those good attributes begin to fade and people know you, bluntly, as an alcoholic.

One of the hardest parts of alcohol treatment is that you need to overcome this negative identity for your own benefit. When you enroll in our alcoholism treatment program in Lubbock, Texas, you gain better access to the tools and resources you need to improve your identity. A big part of this comes from ridding your body of the alcohol. It means working through detox and intense therapy to get to a safe place.

One of the good things about alcohol rehab is that you get to redefine yourself and your life going forward. It isn’t easy, but you are able to begin to pull together the pieces of the person you want to be. Ask yourself, then, this simple question. “Who am I?” Answer based on who you want to be without alcohol.

  • Are you a parent? Perhaps you are a mother or father striving to provide a good place for your child.
  • Are you a friend? Who are you able to support through your friendship and companionship? How are you being a friend to others?
  • Are you a talented artist? Are you a dedicated employee? Are you a leader?

A good way to look at this is to focus on what you aspire to be. Without alcohol controlling your day-to-day activities, what would you rather be? It’s important to see a vision of your life without these substances in it.

How to Find Your Identity Without Alcohol

It’s not a simple as just naming a few things and making it happen. Many people really don’t know who they are without alcohol in their lives. It’s even harder to come up with a vision of what the ideal world would be if you don’t have any frame of reference. Consider these steps to help you move towards this result.

#1: Rid Your Body of What’s Holding You Back

Many people with alcoholism use it to help them deal with their lives. Your first step then is to get rid of the alcohol in your body. Then, you’re faced with those underlying complications and challenges. With a clear mind, you can begin to see what’s in front of you.

#2: Work to Define What Makes You Happy

Determine what things bring your happiness, even just a smile on your face. It’s always important to engage in new activities, whether it’s horseback riding, a sport, or spending time in nature. Find new things that bring you peace and comfort. Then, find ways to spend more time doing these things.

#3: Define Your Identity Based on Those Feelings

Your identity isn’t about the habits you have, such as drinking alcohol. It is about your happiness, interests, and the love you show for others.

Once you learn how to identify who you are under the veil of alcoholism, you are one step further in the process of creating a life for yourself. It’s empowering to identify yourself. At The Ranch at Dove Tree, this is a key component of the support we offer.

The Fear of Being Sober: It's the Nagging Feeling at the Back of Your Mind - the ranch at dove tree - drug and alcohol treatment center in lubbock, texas

To learn more about our programs at Ranch at Dove Tree, alcohol treatment near Amarillo, please contact us today at 800.218.6727.

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