Self-determination and motivation are two crucial elements in the recovery process of addicts.
Karen Griessel, a social worker at Sanca-accredited Wedge Gardens rehab centre in Johannesburg, says the desire to get clean and sober must be internally driven.
“Self-determination and motivation rest on the person’s core values, interests and morality. The decision to stop drugs and alcohol has to be made by the addict. They must independently and freely make their own informed decisions about their recovery.
“I often meet families or loved ones who motivated and driving their loved one to get treatment but, unfortunately, if a person doesn’t have their own internal drive, motivation and self-determination, it makes the process more challenging,” says Karen.
The person suffering from the substance abuse disorder must want to change their lives and sometimes, says Karen, this process takes time.
“Unfortunately, addicts have often lost their self-belief and therefore don’t feel like they are competent in dealing with life and the challenges that come their way.
“People with self-determination have self-belief and control over their lives; they take accountability and responsibility for their actions. It is these core qualities that are needed in the addiction recovery process.
“In fact, with the nation facing great levels of stress and anxiety as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, we should all focus more on self-determination and motivation so that we do not get sucked into the negativity of helplessness, which leaves people feeling like they do not have the power to improve their situation.
“This leads to hopelessness – the feeling that nothing can be done by anyone to make a situation better – which is highly debilitating.”