Dealing With Resentment in Recovery
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Dealing With Resentment in Recovery

Dealing With Resentment in Recovery

Recovery is a lifelong process. Once you set yourself on a path of recovery, new challenges and responsibilities begin to present themselves daily. While overcoming temptation becomes easier to deal with over time, you still have to endure the challenges and see them through to get to the root of who you are.

Resentment is one of the biggest obstacles to overcome during this process and can easily present itself in your life. However, with time, you can learn how to navigate moments of resentment, gain perspective on your journey and discover what your journey is all about.


There is no forward progress in any recovery or success without first accepting who you once were, who you are now, and learning how to forgive yourself. Controlling emotions and letting them develop into something better instead of growing into a monster that will eventually take over is only possible through forgiveness. Forgiveness not only means bringing closure to those who once harmed you or made life harder but also forgiving yourself. Self-forgiveness is a vital skill that will improve your life and positively shape your recovery by helping strengthen your mentality and attitude towards situations regardless of the circumstances.

It can be effortless to blame others for why your circumstances are the way they are. However, in the end, only the ability to forgive yourself will allow you to move past that point and achieve a better understanding of how using hate and resentment prevents progress. Changing for the good is a decision that requires action. Once you allow yourself to forgive and move forward, you will experience a sense of freedom as you have never felt before.


After years of battling with addiction, it is easy to invite anger into your mind as a regular guest. Anger is an emotion that needs acknowledgment and understanding that it is part of what makes you human. The trouble with anger is when you allow anger to take over constantly. Training your mind to manage anger does not mean that you have the secret and, therefore, will never become angry again. It is the contrary; it means that when you become angry, you will have the strength to choose how to act upon it and, therefore, have a level of control over how you feel and react.

Learning how to understand your anger and what triggers it helps you discover things about yourself, others, and your situation. When you know the triggers, you can respond to them by learning and planning how to manage them. It might be exercise, meditation, or a five-minute breathing technique that helps bring balance back to your emotions.


In recovery, one of the most dominant feelings you might have is resentment toward your past. Such resentment creates shame and even negative self-talk that eats away at all your recovery progress. You might constantly wonder how things might have been different "if only" you did this or that.

Understand that the past is the past and cannot be changed. Instead, look to the past as a learning tool to help build your future. Everybody is on their journey toward a goal or success in their life; there are millions of different avenues to get there. Therefore, your past decisions and choices led you to where you are today. Among the things you can do to understand your past and its relationship to your future is making peace and embracing what will come. Instead of regretting the past, you can mold your future by focusing on the present and creating new memories that shape a future and a past that you can look back on proudly.


After years of substance use, your emotions need time to restore health and balance; because of this, you might find it difficult to express empathy. Understand that you have not lost the ability. After years of feeling emotionally numb or hardening your emotions, you might be out of practice to resist things that make you happy because you think you don't deserve them.

However, relating to someone's situation, regardless of yours, will bring you enlightenment and the tools to react in the best possible way in any situation. It teaches you that everyone has their challenges, and you cannot judge them based on your challenges. Empathy allows you to find connection and understanding with your challenges and another person's challenges and that everybody needs a helping hand at different times in their life.


Bringing emotional stability into your mental and physical health can feel unfathomable during early recovery and make you feel like nobody can relate to you. Thinking this way can cause you to quickly resent all sorts of things, from trivial and insignificant choices to blaming others that might have nothing to do with the outcome of your choices.

Meditation and mindfulness can be a great ally in helping you decide how you want to respond to certain situations in your life. These practices help you understand how and why you feel the way you do at any given time. Soon, you can have the choice as to whether or not to allow negative thoughts to take residence in your mind.

Recovery is a lifelong journey, and while it is essential to seek help and support, the journey belongs to you. At START UP RECOVERY, we help individuals understand that recovery and success are not a one-size-fits-all approach. Healing as an individual takes time and understanding about yourself, where you have been, and where you want to go. When you define your recovery and tell your story, it becomes easier to meet others where they are on their journey and learn from each others' experiences. Recovery is not a process of isolating a particular trait or emotion and treating them individually; it's more of a transformative approach that equally manages all your mental and physical needs to sustain recovery. Sometimes the best approach, when you are in a state of self-sabotage, is to reach out for help. Seeking help will show you that your recovery story is yours to tell; you are never alone. To learn more, reach out to START UP RECOVERY today by calling 310-773-3809.

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