Recognizing the Illusion of Manageability

Accept Your Disease of Addiction

It often takes time to accept that we are suffering from the disease of addiction. We come up with all kinds of reasons why we are not truly powerless over substances. We may look at others and think that, because we have not faced the same sort of consequences as them, we do not suffer from addiction or alcoholism.

We may not have faced the same legal troubles or financial problems as a result of our using as others, but it does not mean that we do not need help or that our lives are manageable. True unmanageability of one’s life is not the result of external consequences, but symptomatic of the disease of addiction and alcoholism.

The first step of Alcoholics Anonymous states: “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.” We may have a good job, financial security, or a clean legal record, and think they are evidence that our lives are, in fact, manageable. It is difficult to surrender to the notion that our lives are unmanageable when we have not experienced extreme external consequences. If we look deeply inside ourselves, however, we will often find that, in spite of these things, we have lost control over our lives.

The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous explains, “We were having trouble with our personal relationships, we couldn’t control our emotional natures, we were a prey to misery and depression, we couldn’t make a living, we had a feeling of uselessness, we were full of fear, we were unhappy, we couldn’t seem to be of real help to other people…” These ‘bedevilments’ are not the result of external consequences, but symptomatic of the disease of addiction and alcoholism.

External consequences are often helpful by acting as the catalyst needed for us to make the decision that treatment is necessary and recognize that we have lost control over substances, but even without external consequences, we can recognize our life’s unmanageability by taking an introspective look at ourselves. Our restlessness, irritability, and discontentment driving us to seek the fleeting relief provided by intoxication make our lives unmanageability. When we recognize that we are suffering from a lack of control and that our internal life has become unmanageable, we finally open ourselves up to accepting the spiritual help we so desperately need.

Recovery is possible. You can overcome addiction and begin building a brighter future in sobriety. The Lakehouse Recovery Center differs from other treatment centers throughout Southern California by focusing on the need for holistic care that is individualized, non-institutional, and cost effective. For information about individually tailored treatment options, from Detox to Aftercare, please call today: (877) 762-3707


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