Negative People in Recovery

Negative People in Recovery

We all know those people who only have bad things to say. Who like to gossip about other people and seem to take delight in others’ struggles – those negative people in recovery. Or maybe you are the negative one among your group of friends and acquaintances. Just because someone has stopped abusing drugs and alcohol does not mean that they are now mentally healthy. There will always be negative people in recovery and it’s important to identify them if you want to be successful in your recovery.

Addiction and Negativity

People who abuse or have abused alcohol and other drugs often have an extremely negative mental attitude. Often times, we get caught up in the grip of addiction because of the negative experiences we have had in the past. As addiction takes root, we begin to feel a lot of shame and guilt about using drugs and alcohol thereby feeding our negative attitudes. Addicts then become trapped in a negative mindset and that way can continue to justify their drug using behaviors: by only seeing the bad things in life, they can then use these as excuses to abuse alcohol and drugs.

Dangers of Negative People to Those in Recovery

Once you get clean and sober, it is not only important to shift from being a negative person but to also identify and avoid negative people in recovery. This is because humans are social beings and therefore we have a significant impact on each other. The people you surround yourself with will definitely influence your success, or lack thereof, in sobriety.

Characteristics of Negative People in Recovery

Once you are aware of what we mean as being negative, it is important to be aware of negative people in recovery so that you can not only be successful at sobriety but also have an overall better quality of life. Now that you are clean and sober, you deserve to be happy and have a more peaceful life. Negative people in recovery can keep you from having this.

 Negative people in recovery tend to share the following characteristics:

  • They are pessimistic, in general, and especially about the future – “the glass is always half empty;” they expect bad things to happen to them
  • They don’t other people; always think others have an ulterior motive even when being extended help
  • They seem to lose friends easily; almost always have somebody in their life who they aren’t talking to
  • They blame other people for all the bad things that happen to them
  • They constantly criticize others and the world, in general
  • They tend to be passive aggressive or even openly aggressive
  • They blow things out of proportions (always have some kind of drama)
  • They enjoy hearing about other people’s misfortunes, such as when someone relapses
  • Negative people in recovery tend to be completely self-centered
  • They are easily offended yet are oblivious to the fact that they often offend or hurt other people

Resentments and Relapse

You may have heard this one quite a bit: holding on to resentments will take you back out (into active addiction). There is a lot of truth to those words of caution. It is important to let go of resentments in order to heal and be successful at sobriety. Negative people in recovery, although they may be sober for the time being, are like a ticking time bomb. They might be off the drugs and alcohol but they are emotionally unwell. They hold onto anger and resentment towards the people that they feel have wronged them. Negative people in recovery are bitter about their past experiences and are not willing to let go and forgive. They get hung up on focusing on other people’s faults and shortcomings but are unwilling to look at their own. And, even if they pass themselves off as being your friend, negative people in recovery resent the success of other people and this includes you. You need to have true and positive friends in your corner if you are serious about your success at recovery.





Practice the principles: Step one

Practice the Principles: Step One

Most people think that step one merely consist of the principle we know as honesty. For me step one contains so much more than that. Step one of the 12 steps of AA is the foundation upon which we work the other 12 steps. Step one encompasses the principles of humility, honesty, and surrender.

Step one of the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous states “We admitted we were powerless of alcohol-that our lives had become unmanageable.” The admission of powerlessness is where the true healing and the discovery of power in a higher power comes from. The humility we feel when admitting defeat and that we are powerlessness is a humility we must carry with us through our entire journey in sobriety. This humility and remembrance of being totally defeated by alcohol is what will keep us willing and willingness is indispensable when it comes to getting and staying sober. When you totally surrender and are honest with yourself about being alcoholic you are then capable of realizing that you need the steps in order to stay sober. Not only that but you need another power other than yourself and alcohol in order to stay sober. This is what is going to allow you to be earnest, humble, willing, and desparate enough to do whatever it takes and whatever is suggested to continue on with your sobriety. Without the admission of defeat and the honesty with yourself about your lack of power you will never be able to in effect have a spiritual experience because you will be unable to accept a new power such as God or whatever your higher power is neither will you be capable of being honest throughout the rest of the steps. The first step of AA is really not a hard one if you find that you have been incapable of stopping regardless of consequences or that you knew the consequences and drank or used drugs anyways than you probably are powerless.

Letting go of power is a fundamental principle of AA because we come to rely on a higher power. If we are still holding onto the idea that we have some kind of control or power over our lives than a higher power cannot come in and do what is necessary for us to live happy, joyous, and free as well as sober. Many times newcomers don’t realize that surrendering and being honest about your condition is one of the most freeing experience. They think the honest admission of powerlessness is a flaw, a sign they are weak, or the ones who don’t want to take responsibility. They also are afraid of admitting they have no control. The truth is step one is freeing. There is something miraculous about saying I don’t know what I am doing someone else show me the way, guide me in my life and in my recovery. Why? Because this means that entire weight of the world and all its people don’t rest on your shoulders. It is good to go back to step one and remember this admission of powerlessness no matter where you are in sobriety because a lot of the times with more clean time we tend to begin to take power back or want control again and we must always remember that we have no control; as it says in step one our unmanageable lives and inability to control our drinking showed us this time and time again.

The principles in step one that need to be continually practiced are humility (realizing that you don’t know everything and are just that newcomer whose life is totally unmanageable when you try to control it), honesty (being honest about the fact that you really don’t have a clue what you are doing), and surrender (giving it up and saying I need help).

Signs my recovery coach is not a right fit

A recovery coach is a professionally trained individual who will be able to offer support in your recovery, share advice, help you make plans for the future, and hold you accountable for taking action. Recovery coaching will help you develop personal goals and make plans to attain them. A recovery coach will develop a coaching plan that is designed to empower you as an individual to achieve your greatest aspirations.

If your recovery coach is not a right fit for you, it may hinder your ability to fully benefit from a recovery coaching program. Here are some signs that it’s not a right fit:

1.) You don’t trust your recovery coach: Trust is an important part of the recovery coach-client relationship. If you do not trust your recovery coach with your deepest desires and aspirations and you cannot be honest about where you are at, your recovery coach will not be very effective. It’s important to build a relationship of trust, honesty and mutual respect.

2.) Your recovery coach is too busy to meet with you regularly: Life happens, and sometimes, your recovery coach may have to cancel or reschedule an appointment. But if your recovery coach is too busy to meet with you on a regular basis, it may be a sign your recovery coach is not a right fit. You need to be able to depend on your recovery coach and see them regularly.

3.) Your recovery coach doesn’t practice what they preach: Just like with choosing a sponsor, it’s more important to look at what a person does when no one’s watching-when they are not at a meeting or in a session with a client. If your recovery coach does not conduct themselves in a manner that is consistent with positive recovery in their personal life, it may be a sign that they are not a right fit. Your recovery coach should be setting a good example for you in all areas of their life.

4.) You connect more with another recovery coach: Sometimes personalities and beliefs collide, and sometimes people just don’t connect with each other. But if there is another recovery coach that you connect with more strongly than with the recovery coach you are seeing, it may be time for a change. Just because you are referred to or choose a certain recovery coach, it doesn’t mean they will necessarily be right for you, or that there isn’t someone who would be better for you out there.  If you feel that your recovery coach is not a right fit for your personality, it’s okay to choose one who does.

5.) They don’t remember key details about your life: You should feel like your recovery coach knows your story and wants to help you achieve your goals in sobriety. Yeah, they may not remember every little thing about you, but they should remember basic facts about your life and the things you talk about. If your recovery coach forgets everything every session, you’re not going to make much progress together.

People, places, and things associated with your addiction

People, places and things associated with addiction

Removing the people, places, and things associated with your past addiction is easier said than done.


Removing the people, places, and things associated with your past addiction is easier said than done in most instances. It is hard to remove all the things you knew and identified with for so long; that is why willingness is so important in order to leave your addiction in the dust.

Removing the people, places and things associated with your past addiction and finding the willingness to do so are essential in getting sober and staying sober. The reason it is so important is because all those things that we associated with in our addiction can lead us back to that addiction. In order to leave our addiction behind we have to leave everything associated with it behind. Any negative people, behavior, things, places, or ideas; all of it must be left where we want to leave our addiction-in our past.

Being willing is the first step to removing the people, places and things associated with your past addiction. Finding the willingness is easier than thinking about how you are going to remove all the people, places and things associated with your past addiction. If you are willing to do whatever it takes to get sober and stay sober you will find removing all these things to be simpler than you ever thought possible. Willingness takes courage and faith in doing what you know is right. A lot of us know that removing people, places, and things associated with your past addiction is necessary but not all of us are willing to do it. Most people who know what it takes to get sober will tell you that it needs to be done all you have to do at first is find the willingness.

Once you find the willingness to remove all the people, places, and things associated with your past addiction you have to find the right actions to start leaving them behind. For instance, if you have friend’s phone numbers that are using or drinking or have friends on Facebook that may be a negative influence; change your phone number or get a new phone and delete them from your facebook account. If you live where you used and drank maybe look into going to treatment in a different city or even state and then build a life there.  If you have things that you associate with your drug use and drinking then it may be best to let go of those things. Maybe donate them to charity or throw them out completely.

When we get sober we have to change all aspects of our lives. Everything about us must be different and removing the people, places, and things associated with our past addictions is a huge step in the right direction. Maybe one day some of these things, people or places can become a small part of our lives again but because we are newly sober we must get rid of the negativity. As a recovering individual we are on a path of positivity and until we get our strength removing the people, places and things associated with our addiction is part of staying on that path.