When you look at a yin and yang symbol, you see five things. First, you see a black half of a circle. Second, you see a small white circle within that black half. Third, you see the white half of a circle. Fourth, you see a small black circle within that white half. Lastly, you see the cohesive whole, the entire circle with the black half, the white half, the black circle, and the white circle. What you’re looking at is more than a symbol. What you’re looking at is an entire philosophy of life. There is everything and there is nothing. There is nothing in the everything and there is everything in the nothing. Fullness in the emptiness. Sadness in the happiness. The yin yang symbol represents the philosophy that life is incredibly non-dualistic, meaning there is a little bit of something in everything. In the good there is bad and the bad there is good. Everything in life has balance, something that addicts and alcoholics in recovery are constantly striving for.
People in recovery who go to treatment learn a lot in their group therapy sessions, including different problematic thought patterns like black and white thinking. Addiction has a tendency to create an all or nothing mindset which can create issue in other areas of life during recovery. Confronting catastrophic, divided thinking is a journey many in recovery take. We can all learn from the yin yang philosophy and incorporate it into our recovery by first looking at our addiction through this lens.
Our addiction had a payoff, beyond the chemical production of pleasure in our brains. For many of us, addiction was a means of survival. Quite literally, addiction changes the operations of the midbrain, the section of the brain responsible for the operations of survival like eating. Our need for survival went deeper than our basic instincts. A large number of people who become chemically dependent on drugs and alcohol experienced trauma in their lifetime. Drugs and alcohol offered a relief from that trauma. Though addiction can become dangerously “bad” in many ways, it has some “good” because it is helping someone survive- until it doesn’t anymore. As someone hits their ‘bottom’ in addiction, they may feel like they are in one of the worst times of their life. Still, there is good in the bad. This bottom is necessary to bring them to recovery. Recovery is good. As good as recovery is, it still happens to people who have experienced a tremendous amount of bad in their life. Ongoing, we continue to experience both the good and the bad, and each is preparing us for the other, creating the foundation for the comprehensive whole of our lives, the wholeness we have been given only as a result of getting sober.
The best move to make for recovery from drug abuse is the quickest move by calling and asking for help immediately. Recovery is possible and healing will take place in mind, body, and spirit. Enlightened Recovery Solutions offers a holistic based, 12-step inspired, clinically proven program for alcoholism and co-occurring disorders. Call (844) 234-LIVE today for information on our partial care programs.
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