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Sobriety isn’t boring. With the right mindset, you can find fun and excitement, sometimes it just takes the form of a sober role model.

It’s a common misconception that people who suffer from addiction tend to come from troubled backgrounds. The reality is that addiction can strike anyone, regardless of their income or social status. Addiction is classified as a chronic and relapsing mental illness. (1) In common with other types of illness, some people may be immune, but many are not.

Tolerance

After prolonged exposure, the human body builds tolerance to addictive substances. This means that the effects of these substances become weaker over time. Patients who are prescribed painkillers to control chronic pain will eventually find that the drugs no longer work at the prescribed dosage. Driven by pain, they may persuade their doctors to prescribe higher dosages. In many cases, they will resort to finding alternative sources of the drugs they are taking.

Treatment

Addiction is something that develops over time, and it may be very well established before a person is even aware he has a problem. The types of substances that cause addiction interfere with the way the brain works, and that often makes it even more difficult for a person to realize there is an issue. (2) When that realization eventually dawns, people with addiction may find it almost impossible to get sober without getting professional help.

Rehab facilities provide the kind of help that people need. Clients can opt for inpatient or outpatient treatment. Through intensive counseling and therapy, clients are helped to understand why they are addicted and how to address the problem. Treatment methods like cognitive behavioral therapy help people to replace the negative behaviors that contribute to their addiction problem with more positive behaviors.

Role Models: Jim Greco

It is never easy for people who suffer from addiction to return to a sober life. However, it is possible, and people can take inspiration from those who have managed to do so.

Jim Greco is a perfect example of how adopting a more positive approach to living helps people stay sober. Jim, a professional skateboarder, struggled with addiction but has managed to stay sober now for more than a decade. Jim replaced the negative behavior that led him to use substances by substituting an intense drive to succeed at skateboarding. His ambition led him to become one of the most talented and skillful skateboarders in the country.

Jim’s newfound zest for life did not end at achieving tremendous success as a skateboarder. Since the time he decided to get sober in 2004, he has been involved in a number of successful business ventures. Skateboard fans and enthusiasts will be familiar with his Hammers brand of skateboards and clothing.

Jim is living proof that addiction does not have to end in despair. Provided people seek out the best help they can get, they can learn to cope with their addiction and rebuild productive lives.

References:

  1. http://dsm5.org/patients-families/addiction
  2. https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugs-brains-behavior-science-addiction/drugs-brain