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Practicing Gratitude in Recovery

Gratitude is a common Christian principle meant to remind people that they are blessed and to appreciate the gifts for which God has given them.

It is easier to see God’s work when we are actively practicing gratitude. People who have hit rock bottom with a drug or alcohol addiction and been able to pick themselves back up have a lot to be thankful for, but they may still struggle to see their lives in this way. We encourage patients in all our different faith-based levels of addiction care to be thankful. Practicing gratitude in recovery cannot only help them appreciate God’s grace but could also help them avoid relapse. 

Why Is Gratitude Important in Recovery?

Not only is gratitude an important part of faith, but it is also an important part of staying sober. When people in recovery have a negative outlook on life, these feelings can dwell and cause them to return to bad habits like using drugs or alcohol to cope.     Not only can practicing gratitude in addiction recovery help people avoid bad habits, but it can help them recognize the progress that they already have made as well. Many of the patients in our Christian residential treatment in Boca came to us when they were at rock bottom. Although they are now sober, they may struggle to see past their former wrongdoings. Instead of being thankful and rejoicing at their progress in recovery, they may dwell on the past. This type of thinking can set back their sobriety journey. Learning how to practice gratitude in recovery can help recovering addicts recognize that even the smallest victories are worth celebrating and give them hope for a brighter future. 

How to Practice Gratitude in Recovery 

Gratitude does not always come easy. Learning how to practice gratitude in recovery may take time and effort, but these tips may make it come more easily. 

Focus on the Good

Gratitude is a lot about thinking positively. It is about focusing on what you do have instead of dwelling on what you don’t or recognizing the progress that you already made in recovery versus looking at the long road ahead. Take challenges or setbacks as opportunities to do better. When you take the time to turn your negative thoughts into more positive ones, it makes practicing gratitude easier. 

Self-Assess Frequently 

Have you practiced gratitude in addiction recovery lately? What are some examples of when you were lacking gratitude? What about examples when you showed gratitude? Taking this regular assessment of your life can help you recognize situations where you could be more thankful and make practicing gratitude easier.  

Do Something for Someone Else

Helping others like volunteering or going out of your way for someone can actually help you feel better about yourself. Especially if you help someone in need who has less than you, it can act as a reminder that you have a lot to be thankful for. 

Write It Down or Say It Aloud 

Instead of just thinking about what you should be thankful for, writing it down or speaking it aloud can help them feel more real. Especially if you choose to write them down, you can look back at your list often and be reminded of the good in your life. 


Sometimes we struggle to find our way on our own. When you are feeling down, pray. He may answer your prayers and help you find the gratitude that you are lacking.  The importance of gratitude in recovery should not be ignored. A little bit of gratitude can go a long way. If you do stumble in your recovery, you are not alone, but you should get help. Our faith-based relapse recovery program can help you get back on track and reinforce your faith in God so that you can continue your recovery journey on the right path.

If you or someone you love is looking for substance abuse help that will also strengthen your relationship with God, we are here. At Faith in Recovery, we want to help guide you. Call 888-280-4763 to get started.