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  • Writer's pictureChoice Recovery

Its Not the What Its the How

What motivates you to quit using? Is it the thought of a life with no problems, hurdles, or challenges? A life where parents, bosses, or significant others stop nagging you. A life void of uncertainty around where you will be sleeping, how bills will get paid, or who will help you escape existing legal problems?

Your addiction hopes you base your recovery on such thoughts. It knows a life without obstacles is not possible and that these false hopes lead to disappointment. It knows that such beliefs may provide motivation to stay clean for a day or two, but that the complexity of life will ultimately bring you back to drugs and alcohol. Your addiction has no problem waiting patiently until these fraudulent motivators are unsuccessful, and then it will take over again

On the surface, it seems really easy to identify what an addict’s problem is. For the uneducated outsider, it appears the abuse of drugs and alcohol is the problem. These outsiders think that drugs are the source of all the failure, excuses, and unwanted outcomes. They believe a result of using is the laziness, flakiness, and lying. And, they conclude that the drugs are why an addict chooses to live their life in mediocrity.

The problem is, science and research tell us a different story. The professionals talk more about how addiction is centered on escaping the pain rather than searching for pleasure. It is more about an addict’s failure to learn the true meaning of honesty, courage, and vulnerability, so freedom of choice never enters their domain. It is that addicts rarely base their words and actions on principles and purpose. It is that addicts fail to accept what they control and what they don’t, what is real and what is made-up, and who they are being versus how their soul wants them to be. And most importantly, that addicts never learn how to deal with the trauma or why that drives them to find comfort in drugs and alcohol.

If abstinence from drugs and alcohol were the cure for addiction, sustainable recovery might be fairly easy. The reality is, sustainable recovery involves far more than not using. Success in sobriety is about learning how to deal with life on life’s terms. It is identifying and working through events from the past that have fractured your soul. It involves a realization that acceptance is as much about the difficulties as it is the victories. It is an understanding that being clean does not mean your problems and frustrations simply vanish, but that they are to be used as the foundation for meaningful action.

This how provides the strength to embrace the challenges of life rather than the desire to run from them. It motivates one to always do the right thing, even when the right thing is hard. The how is about saying "no," asking for help, and accepting that you don't always know the answer. The how of recovery is about living life based on fact rather than fiction, so rationalization never has a voice.

With your custom designed how-to guide, you can build a life that you love that is free and clear from the ravages of addiction. A life you can be proud of as it never stops progressing forward. A life that accepts the uncertainty you are bound to encounter, and a life that motivates you to be better every day. And a life that leaves your addiction in a constant struggle to survive.


If you are looking for an intensive outpatient ("IOP") treatment facility in the Southeast Valley focused on your well-being, Choice Recovery is right for you. The Choice Recovery team supports adults struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. If you are looking for a MAT friendly treatment facility that can support with housing, career services, transportation, and more, Choice Recovery may be the IOP for you. If you are on AHCCCS insurance and need morning or evening IOP services, Choice Recovery is here for you.

Our whole-body approach to care includes health and wellness as well as all the addiction treatment modalities, both modern and tradition. The best way to reach us is by phone at 480-527-0337 or by email at Please call today for more information and to learn if Choice Recovery is right for you. We are conveniently located near the 101 and 60 interchange on the Tempe/Mesa border.


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