Why can’t I stay better? Why doesn’t recovery last?

By David Joel Miller.

If self-help and self-improvement works, why are people still looking? Recovery

There are no shortages of self-help books or self-improvement products.

They appear on talk shows, on the internet and in bookstores a plenty. With all that help why are so many people still looking for a way to achieve happiness and then to stay happy?

There are more than enough religions on earth and plenty of room for anyone who wants to join one, still, there is widespread unhappiness. Why can’t we find a way to happiness and stay there? Some Religions pride themselves on their ability to bear up under suffering, seem to relish in it and contend that they are better at suffering than others.

Not many groups can honestly say that their members are happy on a consistent basis. Your higher power may take away your burdens but you still have the requirement to walk the road of life.

The journey from mental illness or addiction to recovery is a long one.

The road is easier to travel if you have a trustworthy guide. Counselors, therapists, and peers can point us in the direction of recovery. Why is no one able to tell you how to stay happy and recovered once you get there?

Recovery reminds me of the bills I pay. Every month I pay the rent and the utilities and come the first of the month that unreasonable landlord, along with the illogical utility close on his heels, sends me another bill to pay. I paid you off completely last month and you want me to pay again?

Why can’t I be rid of bills and unhappiness all by making one final payment?

What I have come to discover is that most of life’s challenges are not the one-time crisis but the day-to-day strains. The things that throw us off track are not the huge things that others may have labeled us with. Unhappiness often comes not from the nature of our challenges, but from the problems of daily living. This is a real life, some days I like it and some days I do not.

No matter how hard I struggle to get out of the ditch and back on the road of life there are always bound to be more bumps down the road. Just because I get up does not mean that nothing will ever knock me down. The road of life is full of bumps. At any time the problems of life can knock me down again. What matters is how I react to those crises, that and having a good support team that can help pull me out of the ditch and gets me back on the road of life again.

As I face the day-to-day challenges in my life I try to keep reminding myself that this too will pass. The pain may be a part of life but the suffering continues to be optional. I can stay stuck in my problem or I can move forward and have the best life possible under the circumstance. The choice is mine.

How is your recovery going today?

Are you making progress towards being the better person you want to be? Have you seized some positive thoughts and some happiness today? What are you doing to further your recovery? If you have a support system in place have you reached out to them recently? If there is no one in your corner how can you create and maintain that support system we all need? Here is wishing you all the happiness that you can squeeze out of this life whatever the challenges and obstacles you are struggling with today. Life never is about the destination, it is always about how well we make the journey.

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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page. For information about my other writing work beyond this blog check out my Google+ page or the Facebook author’s page, up under David Joel Miller. Posts to the “books, trainings, and classes” category will tell you about those activities. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books


One thought on “Why can’t I stay better? Why doesn’t recovery last?

  1. Pingback: Going nowhere fast? When you want something and you’re not getting it. | counselorssoapbox

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