Are you struggling with addiction? Wondering where to start? Do you think it will be impossible to go sober, that your friends will kick you out of your group, that your boss will fire you, your partner will leave you and practically your world will come crashing down? In reality, this is not how it happens.
The fear that pushes these thoughts and doubts in your mind is the fear that pushes you deeper into addiction. You need to show it that it does not control you, that you are the protagonist in your life’s story. And if you think recovery is impossible, rehab success stories are available to show that, even though the whole world is watching, it is possible to heal, to rediscover yourself and the benefits of sobriety.
Paul Gascoigne’s Magnificent Recovery
Paul Gascoigne is a former professional football player who has battled alcohol abuse for years. He was given a 2-year suspended prison sentence after being convicted of drunk driving in 2004. His career as an England international footballer ended when he was sent off for kicking his own teammate.
He was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at the age of 25 but had been drinking heavily since he was 14. At one point, he drank 18 pints of beer each day. This led to him going through detox on numerous occasions.
Paul finally received the help he needed when he admitted himself to the Providence Projects. There, he received attention, care and advice on how to fight cravings, ignore triggers, to control fears. The world of football loved Gazza’s abilities on the field, but they also loved laughing at his defeats in his personal life. Thankfully, we are improving, and while he is the healthiest he has ever been, we smile and support him as a community.
Fatboy Slim’s Fears of DJing Sober
Fatboy Slim, real name Norman Cook, is a world-renowned DJ with a Grammy award, two Brit Awards, nine MTV video music awards and many more formal recognitions in his career. However, what many don’t know is that he had a fear. Fear of doing what he does best while sober.
Some will wonder, but many know – this is what addiction does to us. While we think we own our experience, our professionalism, our relationships and our character to alcohol or drugs, we fear giving it up. It is Stockholm syndrome, but with a substance.
After many years of struggle, he and his wife decided it was time to seek help. This is when he signed up for the detox and rehabilitation programme at the Providence Projects, spending a month in inpatient care and re-learning what it’s like to be himself, without the external obstacles that alcohol sets before him.
More than 10 years later, Fatboy Slim is a stable, sober man with a happy family and a career that keeps on winning him awards and the audience’s recognition.
Can I Do It?
Many of us wonder – but can I do it? And this is where it gets tough – yes, you can. You can do it. You can fight addiction, you can cancel your shows, your engagements, your special events. You can look after yourself. You can heal. You can forget about the daily pains, the lack of energy, the lethargy, the abusive thoughts. You can.
And you must.
Seeking help for addiction is the only way to get better. If you’re ready, there are options out there. There are programmes that will work with you and give you tools so you can stay clean and sober. But it takes courage to admit you have a problem and want to change.
If you’re thinking about getting sober, or already are, here are some tips:
- Don’t wait! Get the information you need now.
- Start small. Be realistic.
- Tell someone you trust.
- Start by asking for help.
- Choose a program that fits your needs best.
- Give yourself permission to fail.
- Follow the steps and listen to the messages from your sponsor.
- Find a 12 step meeting near you.
- Stay connected to the process.
- Remember, you’re not alone.
And most importantly, share and celebrate your successes! Mark those days on the calendar, organise sober parties or dates with your partner to enjoy the moments which build you up. If you ever feel down, like you are not making any progress, look at those many days in which you advanced – you are now one with them.