Optimal Health

Recovery and Sobriety: Is There A Difference?

By Jeff Vickers: Guest Blogger

When I was in 3rdgrade, I was already reading newspapers. I found at an early age that I loved reading. More specifically, I love learning. Reading was and still is, one of the ways I love to learn. 

In addition to reading, I’m fond of language. Not “learning foreign languages,” but the proper use of language, in general. I’m of the belief that words are powerful. So, when I hear the misuse of language, I tend to make corrections where I see fit.

Hello, my name is Jeff. I’m a recovery addict, enjoying a life of sobriety.

Unfortunately, many still believe “sobriety,” and “recovery” are interchangeable terms. Being a sober enthusiast, who loves the proper use of language, has led to me respectfully correct this common misnomer.

What is Recovery?
Recovery is returning to a state of health, or well-being. It is the path we take to regain what we lost, when we became addicts. It’s the road that leads to a sober life.

What is recovery regarding our physical well-being? According to Yale Medicine, “It is the process of change through which individuals improve their health.” From a medical standpoint, if you’re in recovery, you are on your way back to a healthy state of being. So, every time I say that I am a “recovering” addict, I am claiming a state of perpetual well-being.

We can also look at it from another perspective. 

When we “recover” something, we are retrieving it. Let’s use data as an example, for instance. When we lose the password to our email account, what do we do? We try to “recover” our password.

When we sign into our Gmail account, Google uses precautions just in case we forget our password. They set up measures to ensure that we aren’t locked out of our account. We set up security questions. And we’re asked for a “recovery” email address. We’re even asked for a “recovery” phone number. “Recovery,” in this instance, is used to retrieve lost information.

By using both definitions, we can conclude that: recovery is the process we go through to retrieve the health we lost due to addiction.

So, when I introduce myself as a “recovering addict,” I am essentially reclaiming the health I lost. Spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical health.

What is Sobriety?
Some believe being sober means not using drugs or drinking. This couldn’t be further from the truth. This is the definition of abstinence. 

However, sobriety is the lifestyle a recovering addict seeks. Being sober is making conscientious decisions that reflect a life of wellness. 

If I am seeking wellness, this will be reflected in all areas of my life: spiritually, mentally, emotionally, physically, and socially. 

My new relationship with drugs is just a part of that “wellness perspective.” 

Common questions a sober person may ask themselves are:

  1. How am I feeding myself spiritually?
  2. What subjects am I learning about?
  3. What am I doing to ensure healthy emotions?
  4. Am I taking care of my body?
  5. Are my social activities healthy for me?
  6. Do I have substantive relationships?

The answers to these questions are seen in the life choices of a sober person. Not partaking in a drink, is just one of those kinds of choices.

Like a patient who receives a successful transplant, the sober person has another chance at life. Both have conquered a malady. Now, full of vigor and optimism, both will seek to live as healthy as possible. 

When you are sober, your life pivots. A sober person is a transformed person. They are no longer who they were. So, it is impossible to live, as they did.

A life of sobriety is a life where healthy choices are paramount.

And So…
At some point in my addictive life, a catalyst occurred. Once that happened, I stepped onto the road of recovery, the road to healing. 

This “healing” is of a spiritual nature. I believe my spiritual malady is what affected my self-image. This negative self-image is what led to my drug addiction.

Recovery, then, is the road to healing which leads to self-realization. This is the road that leads to sobriety. Sobriety, then, is the life lived by those who seek to become better versions of themselves.

I am on a constant quest to become a better me. I wish you the same.

Jeff Vickers

______________________________________________________________________

Jeff Vickers is a content writer, copywriter, and new author.

After a 30-year battle with addiction, Jeff was transformed by embracing the power of recovery. A self-proclaimed, “sober enthusiast,” his passion is helping people grow in their sobriety. 

After becoming fascinated by the power of recovery mottos, Jeff looked for books on the subject. Finding none, he decided to write one himself. The result is a series entitled, “Sober Slogans.” The first book of the series, “Recovery Mottos We Love,” will be released soon.

Jeff loves to write wearing his favorite Star Wars pajamas, while listening to Damien Escobar. When he is not writing, Jeff spends time binging on old episodes of “Shark Tank,” with his partner, Sara.

Aside from being excited about the release of his first book, Jeff says, “I’m about to get my first puppy! He is a beautiful, spotted pit bull.” 

He is currently working on the second book of the series, “Sober Slogans.”

Keep in touch with Jeff here:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/soberslogans
Instagram: @sober_slogans
Email: soberslogans@gmail.com

12 comments on “Recovery and Sobriety: Is There A Difference?

  1. What a great article with a lot to think on. I think the way you define recovery is beautiful and makes it feel awfully inviting! In my opinion, recovery is the action…sobriety is the mindset. Wishing you wellness!

    Stacia

    • Thank you so much for your response. I hope you will enter your email address to receive more thought provoking articles straight to your inbox. Really appreciate the support. Vince Shifflett

  2. Sarah Perdue

    I think what Jeff said is so important about how in order to achieve recovery, your life has to pivot. Its totally true and I feel like many people struggle with this so much and end up using or relapsing. I think hearing from someone who is real, down to Earth, and knowledgeable can save so many people from a life of darkness and servitude to their vices. Thank you, Jeff for sharing your insight with the world.

    • Sarah, I am glad my guest bloggers article resonated so well with you. You will be seeing more of his articles as well as thought provoking articles from myself. I hope you will enter your email address to receive the monthly articles straight to you inbox. The support is greatly appreciated as we all grow together. Vince Shifflett

  3. Well written. So many words get intertwined and confused. Thank you for your truth and perspective.

    • I am glad my guest bloggers article resonated so well with you. You will be seeing more of his articles as well as thought provoking articles from myself. I hope you will enter your email address to receive the monthly articles straight to you inbox. The support is greatly appreciated as we all grow together. Vince Shifflett

  4. I’ve never really thought of them like this before. Very well written, thank you for sharing

    • I am glad my guest bloggers article resonated so well with you. You will be seeing more of his articles as well as thought provoking articles from myself. I hope you will enter your email address to receive the monthly articles straight to you inbox. The support is greatly appreciated as we all grow together. Vince Shifflett

  5. valuedforever

    This is good stuff ❤️🔥❤️

    -@valuedfotever

  6. Jennifer Monger Jones

    My husband got sober and walked out on a 25 year marriage. He walked out 2 years to the day that he got sober. Sent me a picture that night of his two year sober medallion from AA. Not sure what that means.

  7. Sandra Smith

    This was awesome and enlightening. Reading is great for learning. From a very early age while in primary school I learnt that “Reading maketh a man. “

  8. Deep! Made me think!

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