Getting sober is not easy task. It comes with its ups and downs and a lot of hard work. With almost 60 percent of sober people experiencing relapse, it’s no wonder that people are afraid of getting sober. Understanding your fear of getting sober is the first step to conquering it. Once you get a hold on the fears that are driving your hesitation and procrastination, you can begin to see clearly the benefits of getting sober. Below are ten reasons why people are afraid to get sober and how to overcome them.
- They Are Afraid of Failure: Nobody wants to fail at something they’re trying really hard to succeed at. The failure rates for getting sober never look to promising, which is why many people are afraid to even try in the first place. The most important thing to remember is that failure isn’t a good enough reason to give up. It just means that you have to pick yourself up, learn from your mistakes, and keep going. Failure is an inevitable part of any journey in life, and the sooner you accept this fact the sooner you can get over your fear of getting sober.
- They Think They Don’t Have Enough Discipline: It’s true that getting sober requires a lot of discipline and willpower, but that’s no excuse to not go through with it. What most people don’t understand is that getting sober isn’t about depriving yourself of something or using your willpower to steer clear of drugs and alcohol, it’s about changing the way you view the role of drugs and alcohol in your life. When you think of getting sober as a sustainable lifestyle instead of a short term solution, the fear of not having enough discipline quickly fades away.
- The Fear of Becoming Boring: One of the most common fears when it comes to getting sober is that you will turn into a boring person. People who drink are more fun and exciting. They let their inhibitions and walls down and are always the center of the party. When you take away the alcohol all of those things fall away with it. The truth is that you don’t need alcohol to unleash the “fun you,” it’s been inside you the whole time. Without alcohol it may take a little more courage to be crazy and uninhibited, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Plus, without alcohol you won’t have to worry waking up the next morning with regrets and a hangover.
- They Are in Denial About Their Addiction: Another reason people are afraid to get sober is that getting sober means they will have to face the fact that they are addicted in the first place. Avoiding being sober means avoiding confronting your problems and living in a land of blissful ignorance. When you can’t accept the fact that you have an addiction, the idea of getting sober can seem terrifying.
- They Don’t Know Who They Are Without Drugs: Many people use drugs or alcohol to define who they are. Whether you’re the guy who always knows how to have a good time or the person who makes the meanest martini, alcohol is no way to define yourself. In order to get over this fear, it’s a good idea to examine other parts of yourself that positively shape your identity, whether that’s your family, your friends, your job, or your passions.
- They Need a Coping Mechanism: For a lot of people drugs and alcohol are a way to cope with pain and depression. The biggest fear for them is that getting sober means they won’t have a way to cover up their feelings. Seeking professional help can lead you to understanding where the pain comes from and finding better ways to confront and deal with it than drugs and alcohol.
- They’re Afraid Their Friends Will Leave Them: It can be tough being the only sober one at a party or social gathering. The fear of a lot of addicts is that if they become sober their friends will think they’re lame or boring and not want to hang out with them anymore. The truth is that if your friends would think this about you if you were sober than you may need to consider finding new friends. True friends are supportive and there for you no matter what’s going on in your life.
- They Don’t Want to Be Labeled as an Addict: With the fact of getting sober comes the fact that you needed to get sober because you’re an addict. Non-addicts don’t become sober, therefore most people are afraid of having their problems out in the open once they become sober. This shouldn’t be a problem if you own up to your past and communicate openly with your friends and family. Trying to hide the fact that you were an addict or you’re now sober only makes things worse. Stop caring so much about what other people think, and have the courage to let people know you’re sober and you’re proud.
- They Won’t Know What to Do Without Alcohol: For a lot of addicts imagining a life without drugs or alcohol is nearly impossible. This fear comes from not knowing what to do with yourself once you’re sober. Most addicts spend their free time doing activities that revolve around alcohol or drugs. It’s good to remember that once you’re sober there’s so many more activities you can do that don’t involve drugs. Whether it’s picking up an old hobby, taking a class, or getting into exercise, your options are limitless.
- Their Lives Will Change: People are afraid to get sober because they think their lives will change. And this is very true, your life will change completely. But it’s important to remember that this is a good thing, and the changes in your life will be positive. Change can be scary, but when you embrace it with open arms it can lead to great opportunities.
Nobody ever said getting sober was easy, but it doesn’t have to be as scary as it seems. Understanding your fears behind getting sober can help you conquer them and start your journey to recovery.