The CHOICE Recovery Model – Have a Vision 

In the last blog we looked at the C of the CHOICE Recovery Model – Challenge Core Beliefs, this week we’re on H – Have a Vision. 

There are two ways of looking at addiction recovery – either you can focus on giving something up, or you can focus on starting something new. Both are true, but it’s a ‘choice’ whether you put your energy into seeing the losses, or the gains; the past, or the future.  Developing a vision enables us to see beyond our current reality to a new one; to dream that something better is possible, something better than the way we live and feel today. In addition, a vision enables us to:-

  • Set priorities– if you know what you want it’s much easier to prioritise your emotional, psychological and physical energy towards achieving it. 
  • Overcome obstacles– there are many challenges on the road to recovery, but if you have a clear image of the future you want to have then it is easier to overcome the things that might get in your way. 
  • Establish meaning in life– having a vision can provide an essential sense of purpose and direction - in short, a reason to be living.
  • Maintain motivation– when recovery feels like hard work, having a vision can help to keep motivation alive and drive us towards our goals. 

Committing to recovery requires developing a vision of a new, happier future; a future that is free of shame and offers fulfilment. Inevitably there is a period of mourning for what has been lost, but as long as there is true hope for the future, the loss process can be bearable. 

There are a number of different ways to create a vision. One of the. A common one is to think about what eulogy you would want to hear at your funeral, in other words, how you want people to remember you. Or some people create one by thinking about how they would live their life if they found out they only had a limited period of time left to live. You can find more information on writing a vision in my latest book, Understanding & Recognising Sex & Pornography Addiction 2ndEdition (Routledge 2018).  

In my clinical experience, creating a vision can cement a commitment to recovery more than anything else and can literally be life changing. 

Remember – recovery is about CHOICE

C – Challenge core beliefs – you can have the life you want

H – Have a vision – decide what you want that life to look like

Next time we’ll look at ‘0”