Healing From the Past -
from the Recovery Learning Series at SupportNet.ca
- Resources for Your Recovery.
Recovery is learning to enjoy life - without the use
of alcohol or drugs that alter mind or mood.
It is treatment for the condition of addiction - an
approach to the challenges of life - and a path to
Recovery requires us to learn - about the true nature
It may be personalized - but it has its necessary
Principles and its Ways.
The Principles of Recovery provide direction - to
the choices that we face each day.
The Ways of Recovery provide
us with tools - that help us to heal - and to enjoy
life on life’s
This Learning Seminar helps you to learn about Healing
From the Past -
What you need to know - and how to grow beyond the
events and habits of yesterday.
Past and Present
A most pressing issue of early recovery - is that
problems of the past intrude today.
The mind seems pulled to the worst of past events.
Its memories stir feelings of guilt, shame and remorse.
And the only way that we know is to use.
The past is a huge place. It is easy to get lost -
or stuck - in its many dark corners.
The feelings that come may be as raw as the day they
They bring urges to use - at a time when we are most
Recovery respects the risk of relapse - a compulsion
to run from leftover feeling.
But recovery offers different ways - to grow beyond
the past - one day at a time.
And its way begins in our learning the difference
between present and past.
I may be doing the right things today - attending
to a meeting - and talking with honesty.
But my mind jumps to a memory of the past - and my
body is filled with anger or shame.
It is memory that stirs feeling - and brings the past
alive inside of us today.
Boundaries, education and support are necessary to
Boundaries in mind and time - between our self and
our memories of the past - are a necessary first step
Don’t Go There - is a traditional message
to those early in recovery.
It means to hold your mind in the day - to deal with
the challenges that you face today - to learn how to
calm and to ground your self right now.
A misunderstanding of this message - is that recovery
says to ignore the past.
This is an error - as recovery offers clear and powerful
means to heal from the past.
But we do not try to climb a mountain - the day after
we break our leg.
And we do not learn how to swim - by diving to the
middle of an ocean.
Recovery offers a path of healing - that does not
lead us to relapse or to drown along the way.
In recovery or healing - the first step is always
Accept that the past has happened - and that its events
cannot be changed.
The past is a part of us that cannot be removed from
The second lesson to understand is that the past is
To heal from the past means to learn the difference
between yesterday and today.
It is not necessary to spend our day reliving the
past - and it is seldom our benefit to do so.
If our mind is not here - We will miss the opportunity
Ground your self now.
Take a breath deeply to your belly - and let go of
the chatter in your mind.
Rest your mind on what is happening right now - feel
your body - and listen to the sounds around you. Ground
your self in the moment right now.
When a memory comes - notice it - and let it go.
Take a breath deeply to your belly. Feel the movement
of your body - and bring your mind back in to your
Ask for help to stay in the day - and to move on with
what needs to be done.
Healing from the past means to not let it disrupt
your day today.
Memories will of course stir feelings inside us.
But it is the feelings that are happening right now
- and it is the feelings to which we respond.
Talk - Journal Write - Get
some exercise - Learn ways to calm your self - and
Don’t run - don’t
let a few feelings push you around.
Learn how to deal with what is inside you right now.
Notice feelings - accept them - consider and question
them. Learn what you can and let them pass on.
Recovery does not say to ignore or to disregard the
past - and it does not make memories or feelings disappear.
Recovery just says to not tackle its mountain of issues
all at once right now.
Learn to face memory and its feeling - one bit at
a time as they come to your mind - to calm and ground
your self - as you let them pass on their way again.
Ask for help to stay in the moment - and to not let
the past take over your day.
The past may sometimes roar in - with vivid memory
and overwhelming feeling.
These times require all effort to strict boundaries
within your mind.
Distract your self and call on a recovery support.
Apply your strategies for self calming and relapse
And through it all remind your self that - This
Too Shall Pass.
Confidence grows as we face the past and hold to our
We learn to settle our selves and to not be so pushed
about by memory and feeling.
The mountain of the past does not seem so large as
we learn to rise above.
Healing from the past means to not disregard it -
or to let it consume our day.
We have feelings to face - and amends to make.
But if this is done too quickly - if we have not taken
time to heal and to learn how to settle our self -
the past can be a grave risk to recovery - to our health
Recovery helps us to learn the difference between
what is past and what is now.
It helps us to grow - above and beyond - what seems
at the outset like a mountain of past events, problems
and held feeling.
In the beginning, we need to set the past aside for
a bit - the whole mountain of issues, events and feelings.
The Principles and Ways of Recovery help us to face
the past as it turns up in bits and pieces today.
As we learn to hold our ground and to settle our selves
today - we learn that we can face the past - one day
at a time.
You have now reached the end of Healing From the
Look for this and other Learning Series topics at
www.SupportNet.ca - Resources for Your Recovery.