We know more than ever before about the effects of thoughts on behaviors and mental and physical health. Addiction specialists, researchers, recovery therapists, coaches, and others in the addiction treatment world embrace the idea that changing negative thoughts improve recovery outcomes. Shifting how we think may not always be easy without help at first. When you are in the grip of addiction, negative thinking comes all too easily. In a cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) program, you will learn how to realign thought patterns to eliminate negative thinking.

At Fort Behavioral Health, our team offers a cognitive-behavioral therapy program and other treatment modalities that are highly effective in combating negative thoughts to achieve lasting sobriety. To learn more about negative thinking and addiction recovery and the benefits of combatting negative thoughts, reach out to us today by filling out our online form or calling us at 844.332.1807.

Negative Thinking and Addiction Recovery

The good news about negative thinking and addiction recovery is that creating new pathways in your thinking is far easier than getting rid of old patterns of negative behavior. But until you do, you will repeat those negative thoughts over and over again. Eventually, these thoughts will force you to go down a certain path. Sobriety is very vulnerable to negative thinking. Shifting thoughts can be vital to successful recovery.

Some of the most common types of negative thoughts that can severely undermine recovery include:

  • “It’s not my fault. I take drugs because of something that happened to me.” (victim mentality)
  • “What’s the point of quitting and facing a life with no fun or joy?” (rationalization and justification)
  • “I can’t handle my life if I’m sober.” (making excuses or a crutch mentality)
  • “I’m not strong enough to quit or stay sober.” (negative self-talk)
  • “No one will love me when I am sober.” (negative self-talk)
  • “No one in my family ever benefited from rehab or therapy.” (making excuses)

Combatting Negative Thinking

The problem with negative thoughts is that they can crop up without you even realizing it. Being vigilant as you try to observe your thoughts is a great idea but can seem exhausting. There are some ways to retrain yourself to notice and shift damaging thought patterns more readily. Some methods of combatting negative thinking include:

  • Mindfulness practices, such as meditation-Mindfulness inspires more awareness of your thinking process and keep you centered in the present moment, not the hurtful past or daunting future.
  • Gratitude-Conscious awareness of what is positive can eclipse thoughts of what might be harmful. Instead of focusing on the good thing that will never happen or the bad thing that will probably happen, think instead about what is real today that you can be grateful for.
  • Affirmations-Stating positive thoughts to yourself, also known as affirmations, can have a powerful effect on mood and outlook. Pick some that are easy to remember and repeat to yourself through the day, like, “I deserve to feel happy,” “I am worthy of good things,” or “My life has value and meaning.”
  • Journaling-Write your thoughts down to purge negativity from your mind. You may be surprised when you start keeping a journal how much negative thinking is present. Once you are aware of that, you can begin to shift and release the negative and invite positive thoughts to support your recovery.

Explore the Connection Between Negative Thinking and Addiction Recovery at Fort Behavioral Health

At Fort Behavioral Health, you can experience cognitive-behavioral therapy with a trained therapist who will imbue all your sessions with principles based on personal empowerment through psychoeducation.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy:

  • Emphasizes the present moment
  • Is goal-oriented
  • Focuses on relapse prevention
  • Teaches you to identify, evaluate, and shift negative thoughts and beliefs

As you progress in cognitive-behavioral therapy, which is usually time-limited with clear goals, you will notice shifts not only to your thinking but your mood and behavior as well. To learn more and get answers to your questions about combating negative thoughts, addiction recovery, and our cognitive-behavioral therapy program, reach out to Fort Behavioral Health today. Complete our easy online form or call us at 844.332.1807 to take the first step in your healing journey.


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