The Secrets to a Lasting Recovery
West Coast Recovery Centers’ policy of self-determined recovery has had a lasting and profound effect upon the lives of its clients. It reflects several innovative changes in the mindset of traditional substance use treatment, changes that continue to gain momentum as their results become more and more self-evident. Through a combination of traditional and holistic recovery therapies, this new modality confronts the underlying issues behind chronic substance use. It applies an approach which has long been gaining favor in many western medical disciplines: the treatment of the patient as a whole individual, in lieu of an exclusive focus on the illness.
The Role of Individual Needs
In today’s society, many people have lost the personal connections that were once taken for granted. These include connections with other people, with friends and family, and with society as a whole, but they also include the profound connection that each of us has with ourselves. There is a sense of appreciation, on the part of a given person, for who they are as an individual. Many of the influences in our culture dismiss that as being selfish. The other connections are lost in a sea of professional “working relationships” and casual acquaintances, which we no longer seem to have the time to develop into anything more, but that personal connection with one’s self is perhaps the most lacking of all.
The problem with ignoring yourself is very simple: you’re casting aside the person who knows you best. We aren’t encouraged to see ourselves in this way, but it’s true. Quite literally, we’re each all alone, inside of our respective heads. Aside from what we choose to communicate through language, or to express through art, our thoughts and aspirations remain utterly private. To neglect our own perception of what we need is to trust the majority of our well-being to people who aren’t in our heads: moreover, they’ve also got their own selves to worry about.
You need to be your own top priority. Not “first, last, and only,” but certainly number one. Our society tries its best to impose a polarized view of reality: one must be one thing, or the other. Completely self-centered, or utterly selfless. The truth is, the best way to accommodate any necessity is to take the path that makes the most sense with regard to achieving your ends, which doesn’t include neglecting your personal needs on principle. This will have you at your best, making you more capable of reaching out to others to assist them with their burdens as-needed. It will also make your own self-sustaining happiness much more likely.
The Right to Self-Determination
One of the better ideas of our modern world is the concept that every person born, by dint of their being their own unique individual, has the right to self-determination. We might not always understand how best to pursue that right, or even what it really means, but it’s there. It isn’t limited to a specific demographic, or to an ennobled minority: one of the ways in which the prosperity of a given area of the United States is measured is by upward mobility, or how many people from that location are able to improve upon the economic standing of the generation before them.
Everyone is recognized as having the right to decide who they are, what they want to be, and how they are going to go about achieving their desired ends. This is a practical concept: nobody knows you as well as you know yourself, and nobody can be forced to do anything that they are unwilling to do. Before making a change in their lives, people need to understand how it will affect them. They also need a healthy level of self-assurance, in order to power through the challenges that making any significant change will entail.
Self-determination is a positive and healthy mindset. It is, unfortunately, compromised by today’s fast-paced lifestyle, and has become all the more so since every decision that anybody ever makes became open to public scrutiny by way of social media. People look for external validation: they look to find it, and to provide it, and in so doing they lose sight of themselves. A recovery program with a basis in self-determination helps an individual to return their focus to their own personal responsibility, and reminds them of the importance of looking after themselves.
Self-Determined Substance Use Recovery
When a person with a compromised immune system falls ill with an otherwise treatable condition, doctors will employ therapies which bolster their immune system. This allows their body’s natural resistances to aid in fighting off a potentially deadly condition. West Coast RC’s approach to needs-based, self-determined recovery, at a pace set by the client, provides the mental health equivalent to immune-support therapy. It does more than develop coping skills, or even the ability to develop such skills on one’s own. It helps to reaffirm the necessity of doing so; it reminds the client of their need to look after themselves, and allows for the gradual resumption of personal responsibility over their lives.
In a program based on self-determined recovery, individuals regain their recollection of who they are, and what they’re missing in their lives, at their own pace. With that understanding in hand, the therapy turns to how to go about maintaining focus and achieving those goals which they have set for themselves.