Growing through recovery from addiction can be a huge struggle, requiring a radical lifestyle change, and might feel overwhelming at time. However, you don't have to go at it alone. One of the most valuable tools in your work to overcome addiction is the experience of other people also working on recovery.
By hearing the stories of others, we are encouraged that recovery is possible, and gain advice as we figure out how to pursue our own healing. In sharing our stories with others, we grow in our own self-honesty, and obliterate our sense of shame or self-pity with the awareness that other people care about us.
Emerging technology of social networking offers unprecedented opportunities to meet and connect with other people from all over the world. While many people may simply think of a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account as a tool of self-promotion or entertainment, if used care-fully, social networking can offer many exciting possibilities in your recovery.
If you are working towards recovery from addiction, there are thousands of people from all over the world dealing with similar issues. In today's exciting world, all it takes is the simple touch of a computer or a Smartphone to be able to connect with some of them, getting a boost of support and friendship.
Social networking enables you to see and share inspiration, to comment on your struggles, and get instantaneous support from people to whom you belong and can trust with your own truth. While traditional meetings and therapy sessions have to be scheduled in advance, forcing you to wait even in moment of deep vulnerability or anxiety, online communities can put resources at your disposal whenever you need it.
Thus, social networking can be a very important tool in helping you continue to work on your recovery.
While online resources and social networking can offer a lot of help, it should not be seen as a substitute for traditional therapy or support groups that rely on face-to-face interaction. Communication with people on a real, face-to-face level takes place at a greater level of intimacy, honesty, and mindfulness then online relationships.
Relying on online relationships exclusively can cause you to miss out on these in-person relationships. It is very important that social networking not erode those relationships requiring higher levels of commitment. Social networking can be a helpful tool, but will be most effective when it is one of many tools of which you can take advantage.
There are a number of great social media websites that enable you to connect with fellow addicts online and get support and advice from them. Some are similar to Facebook, in which you can create wall to display whatever information you choose to reveal about yourself (including total anonymity), allowing you to communicate and connect with other people struggling with issues similar to yours. These include myrecovery.com and addictiontribe.com, social.viveraehealth.com,
There are also a lot of websites that use chat rooms or video meetings for global support groups. Much like support groups in person, these online groups enable you to share about your struggles with addiction with others, and be heard in a safe atmosphere. These include 12stepme.org, intherooms.com, Recoveryrealm.com, and Hazelden social community.
Although what a "community" or support group will evolve and change with technology, the one thing that will never change is that interconnectivity with others can offer a huge boost in your recovery. Online social networking offers many exciting possibilities for resources, and should be used to find ways to find people with whom you can belong and share your issues with addiction and recovery.