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Work Versus Life: How To Find A Reasonable Balance


Balance is difficult for anyone, but it’s even more difficult for an addict who is in recovery. Your average adult has to balance work, finances, and family as well as their significant other. It’s increasingly hard when you throw children into the mix. Even teenagers and young adults have to find balance between school, work and social activities. Someone who suffers from addiction has had a problem with balance to an extreme because addicts have a lack of understanding of how to act in moderation.

The Mind Of An Addict

An addict’s mind tells them that they need more, more and more, which is how their lives often spiral out of control. They often say that one drink or drug is too many and 1,000 is never enough. Having one of something isn’t typically in an addict’s mind. Their entire addiction revolves around an issue they have with their brain. The prefrontal cortex is designed to keep the pleasure system in check, and it doesn’t function properly for an addict.

As part of basic survival, we all need a pleasure system. It tells us to drink when we’re thirsty and eat when we’re hungry. When this portion of the brain is triggered, it tells us to repeat that action because it gives us pleasure. For most people, the prefrontal cortex restricts the chemicals in the brain that produce the feeling of pleasure, so they can act responsibly and find some balance. Addicts don’t have this same luxury, and they continue to drink or use to extreme extents.

Learning About Balance In Recovery

Most addicts aren’t simply addicted to alcohol or drugs, they’re addicted to pleasure. They can get this feeling with anything, and it continues on into their sobriety, which is why addicts should take their time in treatment to see how their addiction manifests in other ways. The person should ask themselves if they’re also addicted to food, sex, money and work as well. The same strategies they use to overcome their addiction to drugs and alcohol can help them find balance in other aspects of their lives.

This is of the utmost importance. While the best way to maintain a life of health and happiness for an addict is to stay completely abstinent from drugs and alcohol, they can’t do this with everything. If an addict stopped eating or using money, they’d be in quite a bad situation. The key is to find balance in their life to get these things in moderation and figure out what’s enough to fulfill their basic needs.

Balancing Work With Recovery

Most addicts are quick to want to jump back into their normal life when they get sober. They want to believe that after they have a month or two of sobriety that it’s time to repair the damage they’ve caused, and typically they need money to do this. They get a job, and they want to prove to their boss that they can take on any task. They’re also much more willing to work long hours in order to make overtime.

A recovering addict must take a step back and look at the situation before they overdo themselves. An addict can get burnt out extremely quick when they start a new job and cause themselves a large amount of stress, which can be a huge trigger leading to relapse. The recovering addict needs to make sure that their serenity and sanity always comes first, and this will help them find the balance that they need in order to stay sober.

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