Even people with the strongest foundations of recovery struggle at some point in their journey. During difficult times in sobriety, there is typically an extra temptation to act out, whether that’s through relapsing or simply engaging in unhealthy behaviors like overeating or making impulsive choices in relationships. In my personal experience, I have always been told that meditation and prayer are essential elements of getting through these rough patches. However, I always found meditation to be difficult and tedious, and never made an effort to make it a part of my daily routine. But it was during one of those particularly rough times in my sobriety that I decided to commit to a daily guided meditation. It turned out to be what got me through my tough time, and today doing a daily guided meditation is one of the core elements of my recovery.
Choosing a Daily Guided Meditation
One of the major obstacles that made it challenging for me to meditate was that I had a hard time quieting my mind and focusing. Every time I tried to meditate, I would get racing thoughts and I would feel unable to sit still. That changed when I started exploring my options for a daily guided meditation. A guided meditation is a recording of a speaker. These options vary greatly in type. Some guided meditations ask listeners to imagine that they are on a beach or in a serene environment, while others direct listeners to focus on their breathing. Some are even twelve-step based, involving a reading of a prayer or section of twelve step literature and directing listeners to reflect on the words.
Having a daily guided meditation is a great option because it allows you to select what works best for you. In my experience, it was much easier to pick a daily guided meditation that focused on something I was struggling with, rather than try to empty my mind and focus on my own. Guided meditations helped me to direct my attention to something rather than trying to force myself to achieve a state of mind that was difficult for me. This option also gave me a lot of choices- if I was anxious, I could pick a daily guided meditation that directed me to focus on breathing exercises, for example. These meditations offer something for everyone and focus on a wide range of topics, from getting rid of resentments to relaxing before bed.
What Daily Guided Meditation Did for Me
When I committed to doing a daily guided meditation, I was at a low point in my sobriety. I was struggling with panic attacks, racing thoughts, fears about my future, and the painful repercussions of a recent break-up. I was skeptical about whether or not a daily guided meditation would help to solve any of these problems, but I was willing to try. Ultimately I wanted to stay sober and to avoid the temptation to use or drink. Doing a daily guided meditation didn’t instantly solve all of my problems, but it helped to improve my emotional and spiritual life so significantly that I was able to tackle those problems with a clear head. Doing a daily guided meditation helped me to:
- Reduce anxiety
- Begin my day with a positive outlook in the morning, and end it with a sense of inner peace in the evening
- Calm my racing thoughts and gain more mental clarity
- Reduce stress
- Face depression and get in touch with those feelings rather than avoid and ignore them
- Become closer to my Higher Power and boost my faith
- Learn acceptance and make peace with difficult events in my life
- Work on paying attention to my body- recognizing my needs for rest and relaxation and then attending to those needs
Ultimately, doing a daily guided meditation deepened my connection to my Higher Power and helped me to grow spiritually rather than use my struggles as an excuse to slip into unhealthy patterns of behavior. Although it was challenging at first, with practice it became easier. Today, daily guided meditation is a key part of my regular recovery routine.
All About Recovery offers clients traditional and holistic therapy options, including meditation groups, to help people recover from addiction and alcoholism. If you need help, call today at 888-712-8480 for information and admissions.