Sunday, March 24, 2013

8 Warning Signs Addiction Recovery is Fading

Addiction recovery is a fragile process that requires commitment to a promise to sobriety. Addiction recovery is a fragile process that requires commitment to a promise to sobriety. Many people attempting to achieve sobriety and a successful recovery find it very hard to keep to their promise to abstain. Many people, places and life situations will cause a person to relapse. 

Addiction recovery takes focus on your direction, commitment and consistency of performing your action plan. Relapse can happen at any time. If you are not aware of the warning signs of relapse you will not know when a relapse is about to happen.

8 warning signs that your addiction recovery is fading

1. Unwilling to get real about your addiction

To break an addictive pattern you have to be willing and ready to become sober and change your patterns of self-destruction.  Denial can blind a person's eyes, heart and thoughts toward your real need for sobriety. If you are entering into sobriety for some external reason other than self, sobriety is doomed to fail from the start. Be self honest about your motives to recover.   

2. Continued withholding of self-love

"Addiction enters when self-love evaporates."

Many do not realize that self-love is a major issue in addiction. The addicting process is so destructive to a person's character. The addiction soon takes center stage of your life. Addiction will cause you to abandon family, friends, interests, career and most importantly self. Understand in recovery self-love is strength and a barrier to destructiveness.

3. False recognition that you don't need help to get sober 

Recovery is more than just a decision not to use. It is more than a choice to "not do" a substance or habitual pattern. Recognition of how your thoughts or behavior is are distorting your view of self, actions and others. Becoming addicted is the act of forming a relationship with a substance, thought, emotion or behavior, which initially is viewed as vital and beneficial but over time turns toxic. Refusal to admit to the anger and grief of losing that addictive relationship can cause major internal disruption. The idea that you can do alone is a false acknowledgement. Without help the influence of past addicted patterns will draw you to return to the toxic relationship.

4. Looking all the time for a sure fire cure 

The major attraction about addictions is the immediate gratification gained. Recovery is the opposite. Recovery is a deep exploration, readiness, and willingness to commit to the long haul. It takes time, patience and investment. One needs to recognize the original thought that proceeded use, identify your character flaws, and focus consciously daily on the real underlying issues. There is not quick cure. Be willing to spend the time in sobriety.

5. Making excuses for unhealthy thought patterns 

 If you are don't identify and change the thoughts that got you started into the addictive relationship then the original distorted thoughts will surface and take over at any time. The subconscious will allow the sobriety to occur for a while and then trick you into to returning to old thought patterns. Thoughts such as "I am not good enough without___", something bad will happen if I don't use ____", and "I need ___ to function (be social...)". Don't be fooled - every addiction starts with a thought.

6.  Believing recovery is a road to failure

Recovery is an up and down process. One moment sobriety is easy and the next it is full of nothing but hurt and pain. It is a moment to moment battle. Recovery is a hard and constant conscious effort until a new pattern is established. It will take a good 6 months to a year to establish a new pattern. Understand that the strongest skill an addict has is the ability to create habitual patterns. Create and practice a healthy pattern. Choose freedom, not enslavement.

7. Believing short-term sobriety is a cure 

In the short-term the subconscious will allow a change to happen and remain silent. But after time the subconscious will soon torment the conscious mind to return to comfort. Comfort is the old established pattern of use.  

Many recovery addicts believe that after a short time of sobriety they can return to maintenance use without consequences. The subconscious which make 90% of all decisions, will convince you that you are cured and one use will not cause a problem. Don't be tricked. Sobriety is long-term commitment. There is not a cure. Underlying, once an addict always an addict.

8. Inability to love self

Addiction enters when self-love is lost. Part of a successful recovery is to reconnect with self and begin to build a loving relationship with self. If there is no self love there then it is very possible relapse will occur. Addictive habits are developed to fill the hole where self was once.

Own and guard your sobriety or you will be headed for doom and failure in the form of relapse. Be strong in your resolve. Know the warning signs and engage help as soon as you notice anyone of them.

Take Away

To increase success in recovery design a strong action plan with a sponsor or holistic addiction recovery coach, commit to it, follow through each step, create positive thoughts and practice health each day.


About the Author

The author, Coach Bill Tollefson, is a Master Certified Holistic Addiction Recovery and Life Coach in Cape Coral Florida. He brings his education, expertise and training of 38 years as a psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, reality therapist and licensed addiction counselor to his life coaching practice. 

Dr. Bill coaches over  Skype and by phone - 239-349-2209. Or go to his website for more information.

Or join Dr. Bill's Making a Positive Change Community for FREE


  1. "Addictions", I strongly agree, personally when self love evaporates...everything goes down hill from there. I have several addictions, but the one I want to bring out today is eating addictions (disorders). I also believe what was said about there is no short term is a life long journey to freedom, one day at a time. When you start looking too far ahead you lose site of the addiction or you get discouraged and give up. At least that is the way it was for me. I was border line anorexic...the only reason it was called border line...was because it was discovered before it went too far...everyone thought I was "cured"...but I don't believe there is a sure cure. For me I just started going the other way...from under over eating...both are addictions. The reason for the eating problem was never addressed or fixed and I believe that if you don't fix the problem that caused the addiction in the first place...then the addiction is not fixed. I have learned first hand that when you stop loving yourself things start accelerating...because there is a void and you are trying to fill that void with your addiction...whatever it may be. I believe all the warning signs are true...but it does not take all 7 to only took one for me. Thanks Dr. Bill

    1. Anonymous - You are very brave to tell your story and I know you will help others. It shows the strength you have to look at self-love. As long as you love self you will never need an addiction to hide the loss. Continue to be brave and move forward in loving yourself fully. Really it is all we have. Other love from others is a luxury. Blessings

  2. worst addiction was me self confining thoughts....they really consumed me. So number 5 is dangerous to my health and mind. Other addictions such as overeating, denial and thinking I have the cure could be also added to the list.

  3. Sharon - Thanks for your suggestions. Those and others should be added to the list. There are so many. Remember that "every addiction, bar none, starts with a thought." Keep following! Blessings

  4. Thx for sharing. #6 remembering recovery is up and down hit home with me. I am trying to get opiate sober. Would love for your feedback on the way my taper is going if u have time to look at IT.

    1. J'Elle

      I really appreciate your comment on this blog. I feel it is an extremely important blog to help people in sobriety know the warning signs they may be heading for a relapse.

      I will read the blogs of your that you have suggested.

      Again thanks for the positive thoughts.


Please feel free to leave a comment. Your opinion is important.