Jillian is joined by Deanna from Recovering Women Wealth to share her story about drug addiction and the road to recovery.
Deanna’s road to recovery started 10 years ago, at age 36.
At that point, she started to come to terms with the fact that things weren’t working as well as she thought they were. She was addicted to substances and in an extremely destructive relationship. She was in an extremely dark place physically, emotionally, and financially.
At best, I was going to end up insane. Or at worst, I was probably going to die.
Eventually, she came to a bottom which forced her to ask for help. From there, she was able to start a transformation process into the person she is today.
The Path To Recovery
The first step that she needed to take was ending her abusive relationship. She found the courage to walk away but she wasn’t sure where to go next. Looking back, she realized that this was the best decision of her life. The decision set her life on a course for the better.
After the breakup, she started to be more honest with herself and other people. Since she wasn’t sure where to start, she started reaching out to healthy people in her life.
I found that the thing that made me feel sane was just being honest about where I had been and what I was going through.
Based on the advice of people she talked to, she got into a recovery program and completely committed to it. In this program, she was surrounding herself with women that she wanted to emulate. These women were already walking the journey and succeeding at finding a happy life without substances or destructive relationships. Not only did their success encourage her, but also the accountability she found within the group was key.
She made the effort to come clean to her family and friends that did not necessarily know about her struggles. The honesty she shared with others allowed her family to hold herself accountable for this big change in her life.
Basic Steps To Recovery
As Deanna walked the path to recovery, she found that the steps she needed to take were relatively simple.
Really simple tools but can be so profound in this journey.
The first step was simply being honest with yourself about the situation. From that point, you can seek out a therapist, find a support group, and join a recovery group. However, it all starts with being honest with yourself.
For Deanna, the most important part of the process was being honest with herself and others about her choices. Another key part of her success was taking the advice she was given even if she didn’t want to do it.
I decided to just go all in and to follow their advice, and thought, I’m going to treat this like an experiment. If it fails, ok, but at least I’ve given it my all.
In some ways, Deanna treated her recovery as an experiment. She did everything that professionals asked of her. With that attitude, she knew that if the treatments failed it wouldn’t be her fault.
Throughout her journey, Deanna was forced to undergo some deep soul searching to really learn more about her past. The process prompted her to identify her part in past resentments and relationships. Throughout that process, she was able to realize that she had developed some unhealthy coping skills while growing up. Once she recognized those unhealthy habits, she was able to start working towards change. After all, you can’t change what you don’t know.
A Late Start
Deanna has made so much progress in 10 years. Although her journey did not start until 36, she has been able to completely transform her life.
One key area of transformation was healing all of her important relationships. For example, she had some resentment against her father but was able to forgive him. Through honesty, they have been able to heal their relationship together.
At four years into sobriety, Deanna decided to start taking other areas of her life seriously. Based on her past addictions, she had some financial wreckage that needed to be cleaned up. So she started working to build a better financial future. She cleaned up her debts, adjusted her career, and became an investor.
I finally realized that I can do hard things. And I could learn to become, you know, all that I want to be.
It is possible to grow and change from any point in your life. Whether you are starting at 20 or 60, it is never too late to change your future for the better. The mistakes and struggles from your past don’t have to follow you for your entire life.
If you feel like there is something inside that isn’t working quite right, that’s okay. Whether you feel like you need to work on your finances or your relationships, you can make that happen from wherever you currently stand.
The best place to start is by taking the time to reflect on anything your past that you haven’t reconciled with. The foundational work of looking back at your past is critical. We all have imperfect families and struggles to overcome. Many of us need to come from a place of reconciliation and receive forgiveness in order to move forward.
By doing some of that foundational work, you can become ready and able to then… not look for escape in spending, I know I looked for my escape in drinking and drugging, but it’s very easy in this country to find escape in spending or eating or shopping. And that just creates more problems.
The foundational work is not always easy, but it is completely worth it.
By doing the hard work, you are able to create, in my opinion, a more lasting effect on your financial life and just find greater purpose in everything that you do.
Just continue fighting the good fight. Although how you were formed in your younger years might creep back in, through intentionality, you can go against the grain.
How To Connect
If you’d like to learn more about Deanna’s story, then check out Recovering Women Wealth.
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