How Does Positive Talk Create Positive Thinking?

How Does Positive Talk Create Positive Thinking?

Substance abuse both causes and is caused by negative emotions, but positive talk is critical for drug addicts to get and stay clean

For someone caught in the throes of addiction recovery, it might seem silly to put any stock in positive words. What might positive talk do for someone who feels angry, ashamed or depressed? The truth is that there is a lot more to positive talk than clichés and truisms: the words we say, especially the positive ones, can shape the reality we experience. In other words, while a California drug addict may not feel very positive, there is great power in words, and the truth of her situation is not imprisoned to her emotions.

Verbalization and Emotions During Addiction Recovery

While a great amount of intent and willpower is involved in addiction recovery, emotional health is really at the center of the process, because the disease of addiction lives primarily in the emotional part of the brain. Over time, drugs and alcohol change both the physical chemistry of the brain and its psychological function. Many people mistakenly believe that emotions are mere feelings, so what you decide are all that really matters. However, the truth is that emotions drive behavior much more powerfully than conscious thought can; in fact, the part of the brain that manages emotions is also known as the “pleasure center” or “reward center,” because the brain uses a system of chemical signals and responses to reward certain behaviors. In other words, any feeling of pleasure is at the center of a process, particularly abusing drugs to avoid negative feelings. Furthermore, when the brain detects pleasure, it creates new neural pathways to reinforce whatever act caused the pleasure.

The following, critical brain functions are controlled by this process:

  • Impulse control
  • Forming and recalling memories
  • Managing feelings
  • Waking and sleeping
  • Sexual attraction and function
  • Distress tolerance

In other words, the same process that helps you develop skills and endure the pain of exercise to achieve beneficial results will cause California residents to turn to drugs or alcohol when physical or emotional discomfort arises. Because this process all happens in the background, or subconscious, part of the brain, verbalizing one’s feelings is a critical step in the recovery process. In effect, when you talk about your feelings, you move them into the conscious part of your brain where you are much more likely to manage them. The more you discuss your emotions, the more you can rein them in to serve recovery, not relapse.

The Importance of Creative Expression in Addiction Recovery

Creative expression and feedback are some of the most effective vehicles for positive talk that are related to addiction recovery. To connect more with the emotions that drive their behavior, California residents could engage the following creative projects:

  • Painting
  • Writing poetry
  • Songwriting and musical performance
  • Creative writing
  • Acting
  • Sculpturing

Do not allow a lack of experience with a particular artistic medium keep you from the process. These types of expression connect your conscious mind with your subconscious one, which can help you whether the final results are beautiful or not. In fact, creative expression allows you to receive feedback from others on your work, and that kind of dialogue can help you in several ways. For instance, it is personally rewarding to hear how the result of your creativity impacts another person. The feedback you receive might even shed some light on the emotional process you are going through.

Steps Toward Positive Thinking

When negative emotions, stress and pain crowd your mind, it can be difficult, even impossible, to find positive words. However, with the following help, California drug addicts can stay connected with beneficial aspects of life.

  • Connect with a good counselor if you have not already done so
  • Spend some time considering all of the progress you have made
  • Think about the California friends and family who love you and who are in your corner
  • Take an inventory of your strengths and gifts

If you find it difficult to think of positive things, then allow someone who loves you to help you find perspective on yourself. Another excellent way to help positive talk spur positive feelings is to help other people. For instance, volunteering at a non-profit organization can add meaning to your life and improve your self-esteem. When you help others, they will appreciate it, which often leads to positive talk about and to you. When that positive talk improves your self-esteem, you are more likely to experience positive thoughts in other areas of life, such as addiction recovery.

24 Hour Help for California Drug Addicts

If you live in California and would like more information about how positive talk can create positive thinking to stay sober, then please call our toll-free helpline today. Our admissions coordinators are ready 24 hours a day with free advice and help; they can connect you with the best treatment program for your specific needs, or they can help you find structure for positivity in your life. You are not in this alone, so call now for instant help.

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