If your life has been forever altered by the disease of addiction, you know that being the child of an addict (or being a substance abuser yourself) produces a life that is give, give, give. And not to you. Addiction takes everything away from you and never loves you back, or encourages you to be your best self. Children of substance users often feel they’re running on empty and don’t know it can be any different. I know I never learned what normal might be like so I struggle. It’s easy to blame your situation and feelings on your past. But that won’t bring the future you long for.
Time To Invest In Yourself
What does investing in yourself mean? It means changing your thinking, then your actions, so you can create a healthier more productive life for yourself. No one can do it for you. Until very recently, when I started going to the school counselor, I didn't know about the value of investing in my own wants and needs. A lifetime of low self-worth and self-critical thoughts have proven to be a glass ceiling in my everyday life. I desperately wanted to be somebody or get somewhere in my life but couldn’t quite do it. Now that my eyes have been opened to the possibilities of investing in myself, I am now my own mother and simultaneously I am my own child. My counselor has been encouraging me to dwell on what I want and not what I’m missing. This has led to the 3 ways I invest in myself.
3 Ways I now Invest In Myself
- Relax at the end of the day: Taking the time to just be quiet and de-stress makes me feel confident and refreshed.
- Challenge my brain: Doing what I love that teaches me something. For me doing what I love and challenging my brain means reading every night from my list of want-to-learn novels. This calms me down for sleep, but also gives me new things to think about that can challenge my beliefs and teach me new things that may be able to help help me with future jobs.
- Exercise: Self care for my body keeps me fit also lifts my mood. For me, exercise means running. I hate it, but it loves me. I’m never sorry afterwards.
If you fill it up with things that change you for the better, you can rise to a place you didn't know was possible.
The Investment of Self- Care
Everybody chooses his/her own qualifiers for self-care. What makes you feel better? Think about it. Are you doing things now that are helping your future self? What challenges you, and keeps you thinking and growing? Think about something that you’ve wanted to learn, or study. Or that one goal you just can’t seem to reach. Taking step in that direction is a great place to begin investing in yourself. I am now getting used to the idea that I am valuable. I matter. And because I matter, I deserve to teach myself new things, to expand my mind and body.
Take a minute to list some things you have always wanted to do. Things that will make you, more YOU. If you take that first step, the domino effect will reveal itself to be life changing. Like Beyoncé says, “I don’t like to gamble, but if there’s one thing I’m willing to bet on, it’s myself.”
Reach Out Recovery Exclusive By: The Intern