Shame, Guilt and Addiction
Living with an active addiction to drugs and alcohol progresses over some time for several underlying factors and causes. Typically, people will turn to substance abuse as a way to self-medicate and cope with feelings of shame and guilt from negative self-talk and trauma. When you are experiencing guilt, it typically centers around your behaviors that have impacted your relationships or daily life, but there are ways of overcoming shame and guilt in addiction recovery.
Without having the proper support or coping skills to process feelings of guilt, many will develop addictive behaviors towards substances such as drugs and alcohol. Similarly, many substance abusers will have deep-rooted feelings of shame derived from negative self-talk and beliefs that develop from past experiences and traumas that influence how they perceive themselves. To overcome addictions, you must have the support to begin forgiving yourself and releasing any feelings of shame and feelings of guilt.
For more information on how our addiction treatment programs can help heal drug or alcohol dependence, please give The River Source a call at 866-294-9331.
What Is Shame?
Shame and guilt are often considered to be the same. However, there is a distinct difference between guilt and shame. Guilt refers to feeling bad about your behaviors. Whereas, when you feel ashamed, it is due to feelings of shame about yourself and who you are at your core. The definition of shame is defined as a self-conscious emotion arising from the sense that there is something fundamentally wrong with yourself. These feelings of shame often create a sense of self-doubt and a lack of self-esteem.
Why Overcoming Shame and Guilt Matters in Recovery
When you are ready to begin your journey of recovery from addiction, there are crucial steps that need to be taken to overcome addictions successfully. An addiction treatment program will focus on supporting patients in addressing the underlying cause of addiction to drugs and alcohol through evidence-based therapy methods.
Your addictive disorders are rooted in emotions that are dealing with shame and feelings of guilt. To successfully overcome your substance use disorders, you will be provided with addiction treatment models centered around changing your self-talk about your drug and alcohol addiction and your perception of yourself, allowing you to remove negative thoughts and emotions that have been influencing your addictive behaviors.
How Shame and Guilt Hold Us Back
When you are experiencing feelings of shame or feeling guilt, there are impacts on your brain’s reward system and ability to feel meaning and purpose within your daily life. Experiencing guilt and shame in your life will negatively alter your feelings and experiences within your life. This often makes people unable to become vulnerable to emotions, including positive emotions of joy or happiness. Guilt or shame in addiction will work to perpetuate negative self-talk and hinder your ability to find meaning and purpose within your daily lifestyle.
Addiction Therapy for Overcoming Negative Self Talk
At The River Source’s treatment centers, we support our patients with comprehensive addiction treatment programs throughout our levels of care, including alcohol detox or drug detox, inpatient treatment, outpatient treatment, and rehab aftercare planning, including a relapse prevention program. No matter which levels of care you participate in, you will be provided with a comprehensive treatment plan that will support you in identifying the negative self-talk that has been at the core of your addictive behaviors and healing from the emotions and traumas that have contributed to your self-talk and ultimately impacting your drug or alcohol addiction. Our addiction specialists will empower you to redefine your self-worth and esteem, allowing you to succeed in your recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. Call The River Source at 866-294-9331 to learn more today.