It’s 2013. Another New Year is upon us: 12 months, 365 days. Right now, people across our country are embarking on the age-old tradition of making a New Year’s resolution. Friends and family members are promising one another they are definitely going to hit the gym five days a week, or never let that laundry pile up, or call their mother-in-law every Sunday.
Why do they do this? Do they really think saying it will make it so?
Then, a few days of bad weather shows up and it is just too nasty outside to go to the gym. Or, it’s more fun to go to a movie than stay home and deal with dirty clothes. And, Sunday is just such a busy day, there’s no time to pick up the phone. So really, what is the harm? A little less exercise...a little more laundry...a phone call not made. No big deal.
On the contrary, for those in recovery, making a resolution that pertains to recovery can be a very big deal. Eating disorders, mood disorders and addiction are serious and very real illnesses. Therefore, making a resolution will no more “fix” them than it would “fix” leukemia.
Recovery isn’t a promise; it is a process,
carried out with dedication and purpose every single day. It’s a process of identifying and committing to healthy behaviors, using the skills and tools that complement a recovery lifestyle, and relying on a higher power to provide strength and support.
So, as those around you fervently speak of what they will or will not do throughout the next 12 months, make a quiet commitment to yourself. Commit to extending a greater measure of grace, compassion, self-acceptance, and respect to yourself. As January turns into February, then turns into March, take great pride in your steadfast dedication to the process of recovery. By 2014, you will be miles ahead in your recovery … and you might even have clean laundry!
- Dr. Kim Dennis
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