Positive emotional processing is healthy and healing for recovery. Many men who suffer from addiction have learned to keep clear of their emotions. This keeps them from ever connecting to feelings enough to positively engage with emotions. Men who learn to express their emotions are usually more likely to connect with others better in recovery and find healing.
The Challenge of Emotions
Being emotional feels risky for men. The impulse to avoid emotion and over-complicate the recovery process. Successful recovery often requires dealing with emotional issues that led to drug or alcohol abuse. Without honesty, you may want to get free but don’t know how. If you feel isolated, you may not know whom to speak with about it and, meanwhile, withdrawal symptoms may impact your brain and alter your emotional state. Early recovery is a rollercoaster. Dealing with these emotions is a critical step and one many men who struggle with addiction have difficulty mastering. Men may struggle through their emotional lives because:
- Myths say women are more emotional
- There is little impetus to change in a culture that promotes female emotions and men not expressing them
- Words are necessary and men are not taught the vocabulary of connection
- Seeking help may be intimidating
- Asking for help requires vulnerability
Become a Processor
When a person is locked into addiction, they need to face up to their emotions. If they don’t, they risk losing the ability to connect to family and friends who can help them. Numbing feelings with drugs or alcohol can make it easier in the short term to cope, but long-term, it leads to more hurt and frustration. Learning to process emotions in a healing way requires:
- Get anger management help for dealing with an underlying anger and hurt
- Deal with shame in a safe space
- Learn the neural pathways of how emotions work and triggers that may kick up negative feelings
- Process feelings through cognitive behavioral therapy techniques, among others, that support healing
- Find support groups that help you navigate emotional processing
Numbing out is not an option. You can cope easier if you are not trying to hide under the guise of addiction. The ability to process emotions is central. Men can learn the tools necessary, it just takes time and support from loved ones to heal.
The Last Resort provides a safe, supportive environment for men in a retreat-like setting. Nature is an important component of recovery and healing. We strive to provide a place of enrichment that cultivates the inner as well as the outer journey of recovery. However you find your way to the Last Resort, we endeavor to provide a haven where you can journey through recovery feeling like your life and story have meaning and a purpose. Call us to find out more: 512-750-6750.