The Influence of Spirituality in Recovery

By George Cooley

Life is filled with obstacles to be overcome. We learn more about ourselves when we go through challenges, whether they are small obstacles throughout the day or life-altering mountains to climb. Overcoming a challenge requires focus, self-reflection, and a plan to move forward.

One of the hardest challenges you can face in this life is addiction. There are many things you can be addicted to, from alcohol to drug use and everything in between. When you are faced with an addiction, your mind creates neural pathways that have a deep desire to be triggered by engaging in that activity. Overcoming this addiction could be one of the hardest challenges in your life.

Religion and spirituality play an important role in recovering from addiction. Whether you have struggled with this issue for a few months or twenty years, a recovery process that aligns with your beliefs can increase your chances of success. Let’s talk about the influence that religion can have on addiction treatment plans. 

Breaking Mental Barriers

One aspect of overcoming an addiction is breaking mental barriers that are holding back your progress. These psychological challenges can manifest in several ways during addiction recovery.

For example, you might consistently have thoughts that you will never be able to overcome the addiction. Perhaps you are guided by fear that your close friends or family will abandon you during this process even if they have only shown support and encouragement to this point.

Faith in a higher power is something that can help you overcome some of these mental barriers. When you lean into your beliefs, they can provide encouragement and motivation that are desperately needed to break through these mental barriers and give yourself a better chance of ending the addiction. 

Counting Your Blessings

spirituality and recovery

The concept of gratitude has a significant impact on mental health. Those who get into a pattern of being grateful for the blessings in their lives tend to have more positive outlooks on life. This is an important mindset to cultivate when dealing with addiction recovery.

Gratitude can be healing for the soul and the mind. Expressions of gratitude are not exclusive to religion, but they do have a heavy emphasis on many faiths. Taking time each day to be grateful to a higher power for all the blessings in your life can help you take the focus off the mental struggles of addiction. Often, strategies that take your mind off the addictive activity can be the first step in overcoming the problem. 

Aligning Professional Treatment With Your Beliefs

If religion is a big part of your life, then it makes sense that treatment plans based on those beliefs would be more effective. The people who are working alongside you for addiction recovery or rehabilitation are part of your journey, and the process will be easier if they are aligned with your own religious beliefs.

This is why faith-based addiction treatment is often more successful for spiritual individuals. Since your recovery plan involves the same principles that you live by, it is easier for your support team to craft a plan that will have a greater chance of success.

Although addiction treatment can be effective even without the religious touch, adding this feature to your professional recovery plan will help you connect with the process more deeply because of your beliefs. 

Body, Mind, and Spirit

Health is defined by several categories. The most well-known may be mental and physical, but spiritual health is also important, signifying a deep connection to something greater than ourselves. This unification of various health categories makes faith incredibly important for addiction recovery.

Numerous studies have shown faith has a positive impact on health and well-being, with over 84% of scientific studies demonstrating that faith has a positive impact on addiction prevention and recovery. While non-religious recovery plans often focus on the mind and body, faith-based plans incorporate the spiritual aspects as well, leading to a more holistic approach to treatment.

Additionally, there is a strong correlation between the drop in religious beliefs in the United States and the rise of substance abuse and mental health challenges. 

Faith Can Empower Your Addiction Recovery

All aspects of health are connected, which includes mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual. When one aspect of your health suffers, others can follow suit. When attempting to overcome addiction, your treatment plan should encompass all these elements, especially if you are deeply religious.

Belief in a higher power and specific value system can help you break mental barriers, count your blessings, align treatment with those beliefs, and unify your body, mind, and spirit toward the same goal. There are years of research backing up the idea that faith can improve your chances of addiction recovery, so lean into that aspect of your life. 

About the author
George Cooley