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Imagining Recovery

team imagining about recovery

Carl Jung believed that alcoholism was borne of a desire for transcendence, or “thirst for wholeness.” Addicts get high to transcend or overcome a feeling of limitation, whether that be unresolved trauma, a pervasive sense of meaninglessness, or simply the deadening effects of day-to-day life. In almost every case, addiction involves a powerful desire to escape or transcend the conditions in which the addict finds himself. If you need a drug addiction treatment program, contact us today.

In Alcoholics Anonymous it is said that, at some point, the alcoholic crosses a line from which there is no coming back. The Big Book defines the line as a “loss of control” that accompanies the first drink. Most addicts and alcoholics are loathe to admit that they are powerless over drugs and alcohol and that their lives have become unmanageable. Nor can they imagine a life that does not revolve around getting drunk or high. (This is especially true of younger addicts.) This reflects a total poverty of imagination. Tell an addict that recovery demands abstinence, and he feels as though he has been consigned to a jail cell with nothing but a black and white television set. Despite of everything the world has to offer, most addicts cannot imagine enjoying life without drugs or alcohol. Recovery is a tough proposition for someone lacking imagination.

This suggests that addiction may be a compensatory response to a lack of imagination. At Rockland Recovery we “enliven” the 12 Steps by placing them in the broadest possible context. This enables our clients to elucidate a much deeper understanding of addiction and recovery. Dislocation theory affords our clients the tools with which to really understand how their addiction actually evolved. This affords them a new narrative through which to view their lives. And creating a new narrative is a powerful act of imagination.

Carl Jung famously said, “The shoe that fits one, pinches another.” At Rockland Recovery we take pride in our ability to take account of each client’s individual circumstances. Ours is not a “one size fits all approach.” Just as we help them understand how they became addicts; we also seek to inspire our clients’ imagination – to help them imagine a way of life that does not require the use of mind-altering substances. This we believe, is a big part of the “psychic change” described in the Big Book.

Medical Reviewer Kate Perfetti, LADC II

Medically Reviewed by Kate Perfetti, LADC II

Kate is a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor who has worked in the field of substance abuse for the last nine years. At Rockland Recovery, Kate works to provide resources to the local community and engage and progress Rockland Recovery’s alumni program.


Take the First Step Toward Recovery.

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, we encourage you to request a confidential call to explore treatment options, ask questions, and receive support from experienced professionals. We know taking this first step can be challenging, but it’s a courageous and important part of the recovery journey.

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