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Lessons from Working in Addiction Recovery

A varied group of people in recovery in a group therapy session

What can working in addiction recovery teach us? Addiction recovery can be challenging, but the team at Integrative Life Center embraces the highs and lows of the healing journey right alongside our patients. The team has gleaned some lessons from working in addiction recovery that might help you understand more about what it’s like.

What is Addiction Recovery?

People dealing with substance use issues are often also trying to cope with trauma. Substances might have been how they managed their trauma, and now they need help to stop the cycle of addiction. 

Recognizing the negative consequences of addiction on a person’s life is not enough to heal this chronic disease. Long-term use of substances like drugs or alcohol changes the brain, making it difficult to stop using the substance. Patients seek treatment with a lot of hesitancy, distrust, and painful emotions. It’s our job to help them navigate through toward healing. 

Addiction Recovery at Integrative Life Center  

Addiction recovery at Integrative Life Center includes a comprehensive treatment plan we tailor to each patient. It involves various team members, including those who specialize in assisting traumatized patients. 

The goal of addiction recovery is to heal the whole person. To assist patients in merely quitting the use of substances is not enough. We have to address the root trauma and re-establish each person’s whole wellness. 

Those seeking recovery from addiction might be experiencing a co-occurring disorder. When someone experiences a mental health issue and a substance use issue, they have a co-occurring disorder. The presence of multiple disorders can make healing more difficult. But the ILC team can meet each person’s needs. 

The healing process can come with deeply painful emotions and physical hardships. It is intense psychological work. Patients also show great strength, humility, and determination during their recovery process. 

Lessons from Our Team

While helping patients overcome addiction, the Integrative Life Center team learned some lessons that inspire hope in themselves and their patients.

Lesson 1: It’s Not How You Imagine It

You might imagine addiction recovery is a quick, painless process. A patient gets certain medications, then their healing is complete. Alternatively, you might imagine addiction recovery as a horrible process filled with patients who don’t really want to change. Neither of these ideas is accurate. 

The addiction recovery process combines hardships and healing, laughter and tears, hard work and humor. It’s undoubtedly hard work for patients seeking healing. The ILC team meets clients’ struggles with supportive energy to make the process easier.

Lesson 2: Trauma is the Root of Addiction

People often turn to substances to self-medicate. Traumatic experiences can be challenging to deal with, so some people choose to be numb or distracted by drugs or alcohol instead. For a while, this might feel like relief. But, as addiction wreaks havoc on an individual’s life, they may realize they need help. Addressing substance use issues involves addressing the trauma that led people to choose substances in the first place.

Lesson 3: Community is Central to Recovery

A community of supportive team members awaits each individual who comes to Integrative Life Center. Being surrounded by people committed to pursuing recovery is integral to the healing process. ILC wants to avoid isolation in the recovery process by supporting people at every step of the journey. 

Lesson 4: Addiction and Recovery are Complex

If recovering from addiction was easy, there wouldn’t be so many people dealing with the lasting effects of substance use. The recovery process should include multiple levels of care. Integrative Life Center offers a wide range of treatment options, including equine, adventure, art, yoga, group, and individual therapies. We combine these therapies with nutrition and exercise to heal the whole self and establish a healthy lifestyle. 

Lesson 5: Recovery Really Happens

Recovery is possible, but it isn’t easy. The Integrative Life Center team wants to make the work of recovery as simple and worthwhile as possible. We genuinely want our patients to recover and go on to lead the lives they deserve. ILC’s approach to healing trauma and combining therapeutic opportunities maximizes recovery. People who come to ILC want to get well, and our team works with them every step of the way to make sure that happens.


A varied group of people in recovery outdoors high fiving each other

Why We Work in Addiction Recovery at ILC

At Integrative Life Center, we have the freedom to truly meet our clients’ needs. We know each patient is at a different place in their healing journey, but they are ultimately working toward the same goal —recovering from addiction. The goal of recovery creates a sense of community for our patients. 

The resources available to our clients at ILC are rich and diverse. With a vast array of treatment options, patients come to the program knowing we will customize a plan exclusively in their best interest. They also know we will treat them with respect and dignity throughout their healing process.

Recovering from addiction is not one-size-fits-all. The team at ILC is committed to working toward recovery for each individual, whatever therapeutic approach or activity works best for them. The team also is driven to keep learning to offer the best treatment possible. 


Integrative Life Center is proud to lead the way in healing the whole person. The lessons we learn as a team working in addiction recovery inspire us every day. Do you want to work toward holistic health and recovery of patients while being part of a fantastic team of mental health professionals? Learn more about working at ILC by reaching out today. 


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