Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm. -Winston Churchill
Successful recovery is, to a large extent, a learning process. All learning means entering into uncharted territory and endeavoring to experience the, as yet, inexperienced. Often, an important part of the learning process is fault or failure, and these, in various forms, are often part of the recovery experience. Add to this the fact that perfectionism is often part of the psychology of those with addiction problems and the need for developing the ability to move through failure with integrity becomes only more apparent. Too often failure is used as an opportunity to give up, instead of an opportunity to examine and fine-tune the approach used in one’s attempt to transcend addictive patterns. The difference between viewing a failure as an opportunity to give up or seeing it as an opportunity for self-examination is completely perceptual. It is very important in recovery, then, to make a conscious and concerted effort to approach what we perceive as setbacks not as failure but as opportunities to learn. This way, we can actually benefit from what might otherwise throw us back into active addictions.