The definition of the word “vision” is the state of being able to see. While I was in my active addiction, I could see but, only the things that I wanted to see. My view on things, and how I was always right was clouded by my drug-use and selfish ways. The thing I couldn't see was an actual “vision” for myself. I couldn't see my future or my potential. I had no goals, no aspirations, no motivation, other then to stay well and get my next fix. Today, after getting clean and sober, the meaning of the word “vision” has changed for me drastically. I can finally see a vision for myself in a positive way. I can vision a beautiful life for myself and I know I can obtain my goals as long as I stay clean. Today, I am able to continue to look forward and move forward rather then living in my past. I'm able to live in the moment and be present, while still having a clear vision for my future.
This week at South Orange County Detox and Treatment we are talking about vision. Gaining vision that encompasses clarity, determination, persistence, and hope is not easy task, especially for the suffering addict. Incidentally, the ability to create a vision for oneself in sobriety is integral and absolutely necessary for long-term recovery. We talk in the rooms a lot about taking things “one day at a time” and there is much value to this adage. Remaining present in the moment and learning to enjoy life in the here and now is also crucial to sobriety, and just because one has a vision for the future, that does not mean that ignoring one’s current emotional or mental state is any less relevant; they are two sides of the same coin. Being present gives us clarity to seek out and execute our vision while having a vision grants us the serenity to be able to be fully present in the moment. Having a vision of what we want our lives to look like outside of the realm of drugs and misery is foreign to us addicts while we are out running and gunning.
It is, however, invaluable to our recovery because order to be joyous, content, and connected we need to be driven by meaning and purpose. This purpose begins when we have clarity of our vision and sometimes that vision can be as simple as getting to know yourself, who you are, who you want to be, and what you need to do in order to attain it. C.G. Jung put it this way, “Your vision will become clear only when you look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside awakens.” In other words, we can look to lovers, money, power, gambling, cars, clothes, and anything else that temporarily satisfies our true needs, but if we really want to harvest a meaningful and fulfilling vision, we have to look inside ourselves, and to our higher power, rather than illegitimate sources that instill us with that faux and fleeting happiness. The clever and conniving traps of materialism, co-dependency, and power, while ostensibly different, will lead us right back to the horrific road we traveled in substance addition prior to getting sober.
Here at South Orange County Detox & Treatment, we spend a lot of time trying to support our client’s vision, and even more time trying to aid them in discovering what their particular vision is. There is no time better than today to start conceptualizing your vision and putting it into action. If drugs and alcohol are a barrier to the achievement of your vision and purpose, please don’t hesitate to call us where we can help you begin this journey today!
Setting goals and maintaining vision go hand in hand with one another. There is no way to accomplish goals without having a proper vision. Keeping this vision in mind allows an individual to work towards their goals. Sometimes a vision can be clouded with doubt and insecurities when faced with trouble and complications, however, it is important to have a strong grip on the vision so one doesn’t get lost in the process. If there is doubt one must remember why they have set their goals and the importance of it in order to stay on track. Having a vision of accomplishing your goal will allow a person to stay motivated and positive. One must trust in the process and envision themselves accomplishing their goals.
Vision is essential in the healing process of addiction, and in life itself. It says in the bible that without a vision, people perish. Your vision is the key to your future, it’s important to not only look ahead in life but to have a certain way of living out your life. Visualizing what you want, and going for it. Setting an example in recovery and showing others the vision you have created for yourself and living that vision out is so important in helping others. Its shows them that there is hope and that if they think about what they want their life to look like, they can set the goals to achieve that vision. I know personally when I see someone’s vision being lived out in a positive way it’s inspiring. It not only shows what you can be capable of, but also shows leadership. And leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.
There is nothing worse than a blurry vision. This is exactly what you have when you’re in your addiction: you can’t see straight, things appear as they are not, you don’t have a clear picture of what is right in front of you. South Orange County Detox & Treatment has given to me glasses, sober glasses, in the form of understanding emotional sobriety, the role of honesty with all things, and the grace of forgiveness. Through these I see my future clearly: a clear vision of my relationships; my kids and I happy, honest, navigating our way through life, sober, happy, close, healthy, my self-esteem intact and thriving, along with a fulfilling career and a vision of success. So my goal is to keep my new glasses on as my sobriety gift to myself. This will help my vision to stay clear one day at a time as long as I practice keeping them on every day!
I have always pictured myself being self-employed as an artist; doing what I love most, happy, and content. Every time I think about this vision is builds my self-esteem and gives me hope. I know my vision is possible but it will take some work to accomplish. Painting, drawing, or even tattooing are all outlets for me and I love the idea of all of these. Painting and drawing every day will only bring me closer to achieve this. Making a collage of my best work to put out in the world will help get my name out. I see plenty of opportunities through art for me. Art has been my passion since I was little. The possibilities are endless. The creativity is there, I just need to put it into action.
While in my active addiction I relied solely on my current circumstances. I was a young kid who was addicted to drugs and alcohol who had no education that exceeded high school, worked multiple unimportant jobs to me, lost all my hope in my dreams and thought that I would live as addicted for the rest of my life. I struggled with the constant conflict of myself living in my past but also trying to live in my future. My past allowed me to keep justifying my using, and with this came the sight of my future perceived as failure and disappointment, which also kept me stuck in my addiction. Despite this way of thinking, it was inside my true self where I kept a small amount of faith in myself and that I deserved and could be better. I did the best thing I could have ever done for myself which was sought out treatment and where I am today in my life started out with a motivating vision of where I wanted to be and how I was going to get there.
It was during my treatment where I found my imagination again. I started thinking again like I once did before my addiction. When I was little, I used to imagine myself with endless possibilities for my life. I would imagine that I can do anything I wanted to do, just if I was willing to put the work in. This is the same type of thinking I gained back after entering treatment. The first step that I took was using my imagination to see something I was, even when I wasn’t. I had always seen people taking year sobriety chips and never thought I would make it to that level of sobriety… but not this time. This time it was different. I developed a vision of myself achieving one year of sobriety even when I only had a few months of sobriety. I reminded myself that where I was at was only temporary. As long as I put in the work that was needed and lived in my vision each day, my vision would eventually become my reality. Although before anyone else believed in me, I needed to believe in myself.
I achieved that one year of sobriety and am about to take my second sobriety birthday. I couldn’t have achieved any of this along with the other countless gifts that I have received during my sobriety, without having that vision of where I wanted to be and how I was going to get there. I used to rely on sight of where I was going to pick up, who I was going to get it from and where I was going to use it; but now I rely on vision of where I want to be, who I want to be and how I’m going to get there.
After I got sober, my vision for myself was recreated. In sobriety, I'm at a place where my brain is able to conceptualize the bigger picture that life has to offer me if I choose it. Desperation was a gift for me...I started to remember old dreams of myself that I had let go because of fear and anxiety. I’m choosing to push myself and not let fear cripple my vision. Since I have been more open to this reality, I have begun to push myself through the anxiety of public speaking and performing, however, I have the vision of being an musical artist. I have started to practice singing in front of people, and even though the group I’m singing in front of is small, I feel proud of myself for starting somewhere. Whereas in the past, I never would’ve done something that I was scared of even if it meant accomplishing something that I wanted for myself. My vision has changed to focus on old dreams that are now coming out as new ones again. This time, however, I am going to continue to push myself to the standard of the vision I have for my dream to become an artist in the music industry.