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You Won't Get Permission to Break Free
Your mission is yours, defend it.
When I post about sobriety on any of the social media platforms, I’m inevitably met with some variation of the following:
Now, I want to be clear that it’s not all bad, and I hope I’m not coming across like a bitter sober dude because I’m not mad at this in the slightest. I aim to highlight the greater discussion at play: Nobody will give you permission to be better than you are.
I get a ton of people who support the message and many others who find an outlet to share their struggles or that of a loved one, but still, there will be those who don’t “get it”, and that’s okay as I am the only one who I have to answer to. In no way does someone else’s support or resistance to my speaking on living life without booze cause me to pause or question whether the message needs to be shared.
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Addressing the issue of lack of support from friends and family in one's journey of self-improvement is crucial for empowering individuals to persevere and achieve their goals. It doesn’t matter if you’re sharing a message of living the sober life like me, losing weight and eating better, or taking the entrepreneur route and going all in on yourself in business - you’re going to find greater support from others who’ve been there than you will friends and family who were always there "before you changed”.
It's important to understand that not everyone will fully comprehend or embrace the changes and growth you are striving for. It's natural for people to resist change and feel uncomfortable with the idea of someone they know transforming. However, remember that this journey is about you and your personal development, and their skepticism should not define your path. You choosing to do things different will have you escaping the box those around you had you comfortably placed into.
People like you where you make them comfortable, regardless of whether that spot is what’s actually best for your development.
I can tell you firsthand that I lost friends because I don’t drink alcohol anymore; even though sobriety is what’s best for me, that didn’t work for the role I was playing in their world.
It’s an essential step that you seek solace in the fact that self-improvement is primarily an individual endeavor. While external support can be helpful and uplifting, the core drive must come from within you. It's essential to cultivate self-belief and self-motivation, understanding that your own determination is the key to success.
Use this as an opportunity to develop resilience and embrace your own inner strength, even in the face of limited support from others.
When you hit these “walls of limited support”, it may be time that you consider expanding your support network beyond friends and family. Look for like-minded individuals who share similar goals and passions. Join communities or groups centered around personal growth, where you can find encouragement, guidance, and inspiration from individuals who understand your journey. Surround yourself with positive influences and role models who can appreciate and support your aspirations, providing the encouragement you may not receive from those closest to you.
This post from Sober Soulful has a list of Addiction Recovery Substacks:
On your journey towards self-improvement, it's important to remember that the only person who needs to believe in you is yourself.
You may not always have the support of your friends and family, but that shouldn't deter you. Your determination and motivation must come from within; you are capable of overcoming any obstacle and reaching your goals, even when facing doubts or criticism from those around you. Trust your intuition and stay focused on your personal growth.
The path toward self-improvement can be lonely at times, but with each step you take, you are building a brighter and more authentic future for yourself.
Don't give up on you, ever.
- Zachary Small