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The reasons why helping others would be important are numerous. To begin with, helping other people tends to take the attention off of yourself, something that can be of enormous benefit for a recovering addict. Rather than continuing to focus on your own problems and the physical aspects of recovery, your attention turns outward onto the other person. When you assist the other person in making progress and receive gratitude for your efforts, this reward can give you an enormous boost in your own happiness and sense of well-being. In fact, the experience of helping can become an “addiction” in its own right, as you may find that you enjoy it so much that it takes on a high level of importance in your life.
Another reason that providing help can be advantageous for a recovering addict is that it gives an opportunity to gain perspective. As you progress through your own recovery, it is easy to lose sight of how far you have come and even to become critical of yourself when you feel cravings. By working to help another person who is headed down the same road as you are, you get to look back and see where you started. You will tend to recognize in that person’s situation many of the same types of barriers that you faced, and you will be able to provide meaningful encouragement, since you yourself were up against those obstacles and have now successfully overcome them. It is from this viewpoint that a percentage of people who complete the treatment or rehab programs end up deciding to stay on and join the staff. Helping others is simply a great way to feel good! (without substances!) Please join us or call the show!