How Getting My Priorities Straight Helped Give Me My Life Back
Getting my priorities in order was one of the most difficult things for me to do in order to obtain and maintain a clean and sober lifestyle. I really had to take a long look into what I wanted out of life and how I could achieve it. Family, relationships, friendships, etc. All had to be put on hold because I had to work on myself first. For once I had to put myself first and make sure that I was set up to succeed. I was able to recognize that I can’t be anything I want to be to those people if I continued to use drugs. Here is my perspective on each part of my life in which I had to prioritize.
Family are the people who love you most in life. Their love is stronger than anyone else because they are your blood. I know I couldn’t be anything to my family if I continued to use. I couldn’t be the son my mother and father raised because I was never brought up to be an addict. I couldn’t be the brother that my sibling deserved. I couldn’t be the cousin or nephew to any of my aunts, uncles or cousins in my family. All of this because I was using and that caused me to be a monster that they didn’t even recognize. I was in the body of their son and relative and I was wearing his face but deep down I didn’t act or feel like him regardless of how much I yearned to be.
Relationships hit home for me especially because I tried to do the whole ‘hide my using from my girlfriend’ thing plenty of times. All of them ended in disaster, with the relationship being over because they found out about my habit or just didn’t want to deal with how I was acting due to the drugs. These are good people who I manipulated and broke trust with all for my own selfish gains, none of which in the end was worth the broken trust or hurt feelings. If I clearly didn’t love myself enough to stop putting drugs into my arm how could I possibly love another human being? It was a hot mess.
I consider friends to be the people you went to high school with, grew up with, or even the people you have met along the way and formed bonds with. Good people who are moving in the right direction. I’m not talking about the guy sitting next to you while you are snorting something. I mean the people that truly care about you and your well being. You fall out from them just as you fall away from your family and your significant others.
What is crazy about all of this is that most of the time when someone is in active addiction, we know that there are things we can do to help us turn the corner. That’s where priorities come in, focusing on the wrong priorities can prevent the necessary changes from being made. I needed to re-prioritize my entire life and really look at the harm I was causing to not only myself, but to my family, friends, and loved ones as well. I had to ask myself what I really wanted out of life and what my goals were. I’ll tell you this, none of them included using drugs every day or wasting away as an addict.
I knew I had to let the drugs go if I wanted my life to become what it was meant to be. If a college student wants to be a doctor, they must take the necessary courses and put in the work. If an athlete wants to play professionally, they must practice at their craft every day in order to achieve the skill level required. It wasn’t much different for me to overcome addiction, I had to work for everything I have now, and this achievement is possible for anyone who is struggling with addiction or just life in general. All you need to do is get your priorities in order and start working towards your goal. If you or anyone you know needs help, please reach out.
This content was originally published here.