Addiction thrives on isolation, separating the person struggling from those that care most about them, whether friends, family, or colleagues.
Quality friendships prioritise the same features as all relationships, with key tenets of trust, accountability, support, and community. Struggling with addiction is hard, and can cause you to prioritise relationships that can be negative, potentially acting as motivators for your addiction rather than a healthy relationship focused on accountability and mutual respect.
Assess your relationships and look for red flags
A key part of every recovery is reassessing the relationships you have and the ones you may have let go over the course of your addiction. Letting go of relationships that don’t have a positive impact on your life is integral to rebuilding a life free of addiction.
Key red flags to look out for in these relationships are codependency, ego, enabling, drama, or emotional abuse that leaves you exhausted or focused on substances.
Realising that you can walk away from people and build truly connected relationships with people that share common interests and goals is a revelation and will change the way you think about life.
The key to letting go of negative relationships is to focus on identifying which friends have a healthy and rewarding effect on your life, and care about who you are, what you stand for, what your aspirations are, and what you want to achieve.
Becoming a better friend
Putting your positive energy into quality relationships is much more likely to have a positive effect for both of you. By identifying them as someone worthy of your time, you can work to become and remain someone increasingly worthy of theirs – as with all friendships, the goal is to attract like-minded people to share your life journey with.
Addiction often affects the energy and focus you’re able to offer to quality friends and relationships, with your focus consistently sidelined by your addiction.
Creating a supportive community
Surrounded by people that love and support you helps provide the best basis for your addiction recovery, with a community that helps you blossom and feel supported throughout. At ACAU, we believe that you should have the power to choose your own community and build long-lasting relationships.
There are multiple external support communities such as narcotics and alcoholics anonymous – designed as a group counselling program with shared experiences. Many can experience levels of success in these communities, but many also find it difficult to build mutual trust in group or public settings. It is also hard for these relationships to translate to the ‘real world’ as they are entirely based on a mutual experience of addiction, which everyone works through in different times.
As with all communities, trust is an important part of building new relationships – If you’ve ever been hurt before, this can be challenging, but it’s always worth putting in the work to have someone in your corner without judgement.
How ACAU can help
ACAU’s Delta Path program offers a comprehensive plan of private work undertaken with your coach, helping you address the way you approach relationships, how you think about yourself, and how this self-perception influences your interactions and relationships with yourself and others.
An important part of healing from addiction is repairing existing relationships that may have been affected. ACAU offers help to address any damage and work towards re-establishing positive relationships with friends, family, and colleagues, helping you on the journey to rebuilding your life without addiction’s impact.
ACAU’s program offers opportunities to meet others who have successfully navigated addiction and are now living fulfilling and happy lives, surrounded by a supportive community of people they love, with the additional support of a dedicated ACAU coach.
This combination of coaching, family support, and community is highly effective in overcoming addiction, prioritising people you can rely upon, and be heard by.
It’s important to build a strong foundation of people that care about you while actively working to overcome addiction – this will give you the best chance of developing strong and lasting healthy relationships moving forward.
Relationship development and true connection is the key to breaking the cycle of addiction.