Benefits of Making Amends in Recovery
As part of your recovery, you may need to reach out to people you have hurt and make amends to them. For many people, this is one of the most challenging parts of recovery.
Understanding the benefits of making amends can make it easier to take this step. You may still hesitate to make amends, but once you take that first step and experience that first sense of closure, you’ll know it will be worth every minute you give to it.
Benefit #1 – Heals Old Hurts
One of the best benefits of amends is you have an opportunity to deal with and heal the hurts you inflicted on others. Addicts tend to re-write history to justify their actions. Now you can stand tall, be honest with yourself and others. You have a chance to make it right again.
- Understand the Pain Addiction Causes: While making amends, you will come to understand the depth of pain you caused people while addicted. You, too, may experience their pain. It will be challenging to deal with since you are in recovery. You are still dealing with your pain. It can seem impossible to survive their pain as well. However, it is an important lesson to learn. It may prevent future relapses.
- Deal With Your Shame: You will experience shame throughout this process. Reliving past hurts is no easy task. People will describe your behavior you may not remember. It will embarrass you, but you can proceed with the amendment to them. There is no need to continue bringing it up afterward. If you feel shame, it is because you know or suspect you did something wrong. Making amends can help you find closure with your guilt. You can continue to move forward in your recovery with self-pride.
- Rebuild Trust and Relationships: As you make your amends, you will reestablish relationships with some people. They will give you a chance to rebuild trust with them. What an opportunity! It is a great way to heal hurts. If they allow you to start fresh, do it. So many people in recovery never think they will or should get a second or third chance at essential relationships. When it happens, it is such healing.
This first benefit of making amends is so powerful. It is like a cleansing that wipes so much pain, shame, and distrust out of your life. You begin to feel you are a recovered person, a new creation. That feeling gives you the strength to continue making amends. However, there is so much more to come your way.
Benefit #2 – Creates Happiness
Another significant benefit of amends is it allows you to experience joy and happiness in life. Specifically, you get to create a wonderful life for yourself. You are the author of your next chapter. The drug or alcohol is no longer determining what your life looks like, nor is your pain or shame. Opportunities are endless. If you are like many people in recovery, you have not felt this in a long time. You feel happy.
- Discover Your Light: You are finding your self-worth as you make amends to others. The darkness of your addiction and shame no longer hides you. Your inner light is bright and proud, no matter what anyone says to you in response to your amends. The darkness of your addiction is slipping away with each amend you make, regardless of the outcome.
- Boost Your Self-Confidence: When you begin making amends, and people begin forgiving and start supporting your recovery, your confidence increases. You continue to see your worth through the eyes of others and gain the confidence to continue moving forward. As your light increases, you start seeing your value through your eyes. It is your self-confidence that is growing, separate from external forces.
- Build-Up Your Self-Esteem: As your self-confidence grows, you begin to like yourself more and more. You no longer avoid looking in the mirror. Now you are proud of your recovery and accomplishments achieved while making amends. You can hold your head high again. You can look yourself in the eye and smile.
You have achieved allusive happiness. You thought you would never see it again. However, here you are, basking in your light, feeling warm and confident, less pain and more joy, all because you started making amends. You pushed past your fear and look at you now. During this process, you also helped others find happiness. People who worried about you during your addiction get to experience joy with you.
Not everyone you seek to make amends to will be open to the idea. That is their choice. There is nothing you can do about it. Your willingness to take the first step to reach out to them says so much about you. Continue to move forward and make amends when and where you can. Be proud of yourself for making it this far!
Making amends can be a terrifying prospect for people in addiction recovery. They may fear adding pain on top of their misery. Perhaps they believe people will not forgive them or even make amends. It may be that they see no benefits to making amends. However, there are two significant benefits of making amends. The first benefit is that it allows you to heal the old hurts you inflicted on others and perhaps some of your wounds. Secondly, it will enable you to create happiness in your life and others. Located in beautiful Utah, Mountain Peak Recovery provides personalized, holistic addiction and mental health treatment solutions. We work with you to help you discover your light within that allows you to see your value. It is that light that guides you toward your best path to lifelong sobriety. If you need help making amends call us at (801) 824-8829 for guidance.