What is Balance?

The idea of achieving balance in life can possibly seem quite a natural process for many people, depending on what sort of things they want to be in balance.

Many people assume that this means managing a work/life/family balance so that the person has time for each of those, and can integrate them into a healthy and holistic life that is fulfilling and worthwhile.

For someone who is an alcoholic, especially if they are about to enter or even when they leave a rehab, the idea of balance can have a completely different meaning.

It is always a bit dangerous to generalise about alcoholics, but it is probably fair to say that most alcoholics feel their life is completely out of balance when they get sober, both internally and externally.

Many people who are alcoholics live a life that emotionally is based on huge swings of great highs and great lows. Their life as an alcoholic can often result in huge traumas and great joys.

The idea of balance can be equated with a life that is quite boring, and the one thing that most alcoholics crave above all else is excitement.

It is important to re-examine what people who are alcoholics really mean or want, or might want by the idea of balance.

Upon entering rehab, it is probably fair to say that the individual will be in a pretty desperate state, and will need much reassurance that there is a lot of value to the idea of rebuilding their life without the need to drink or use drugs.

Up till this point, the life of the individual is likely to be premised on the basis that they need to drink in order to stay alive and in order to function.

The notion of staying sober and rebuilding a life may seem not only boring, but also pretty mundane and worthless.

It is important for the individual to begin the freedom to explore these doubts, and to begin to get their own understanding of what a life in balance may seem like. It is a good idea to stress that the idea of balance is primarily an internal process, one that is likely to bring a degree of inner stability and peace that may make the idea of balance seem more attractive.

For many people who are alcoholics, the emotional and mental swings that come with active alcoholism can be almost as destructive as the alcohol itself.

This emotional unmanageability can often be seen as an integral part of step one, although it may take the individual some time to realise this.

Achieving a degree of internal stability and emotional balance is the nature of the recovery process as outlined in the 12 step program of Alcoholics Anonymous, the principles of which had been adapted and used by many rehabs in their own addiction treatment programs.