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How to Cope with Grief Over Lost Dreams (and Stay Sober)

How to Cope with Grief Over Lost Dreams (and Stay Sober)

Grief is funny in that it acts differently within each person, no matter who they are or what their experiences have been. Learning to cope with grief can either be disabling or empowering. Grief over lost dreams is just another type of grief that can be dealt with positively, if you have the right tools. Learn how to cope with these challenges and still stay sober.

One Size is Too Small

Everyone wants to find a container for emotions. Whether it is to put it on a shelf far away and not deal with it, or to let it all out and try to flood your consciousness with too many feelings and traumatic memories, it can be hard to deal with a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to coping with grief. There is no container that will fit everyone since each person is unique. Grief is anything but lovely. It is more like a wound that refuses to heal, especially if there are other added layers like addiction and mental health issues to deal with on top of it all. Sometimes you can face the waves, other times it feels like nothing will ever help.

Lost Dreams

When a lost dream has us reeling, it can make us feel like we will never have the life we imagined. This can drive us further down a spiral of emotions. Sometimes we grieve the past, a life that no longer exists. We might grieve this loss in many ways. Each step of the way forward, you might experience new grief around their loss which can be isolating and lonely. When a loved one dies, or is lost to the ravages of addiction, it can feel like coping is a minute-by-minute endeavor. Those lost dreams can haunt you if you are not careful and rob you of being present to your own life.

New Dreams

When you are coping with grief over lost dreams, it can help to share the experience with someone. Connect with a group of people, or individual, who can share the experience with you. Perhaps you can share with a therapist, but it can also help to process with loved ones. Start the grieving process of realizing the dream may never happen. It is a natural tendency to focus on the pain, but work on focusing on the positive. There are many beautiful things in life that can be built, even on the backs of broken dreams.

Envision a new dream for the present reality. Don’t let the past or challenging present determine how you will dream about the future. You will get a vision for it if you take time to notice where you are now, not who you were back then. Now is the time to envision what you can become, warts and all. Bring those experiences with you and start to dream again.

There is always room to dream new dreams. If you dream of a day when you are no longer struggling with addiction or want help for a loved one, we are here to help. Serenity helps recover the lost dreams and hopes and rebuilds a new future in recovery. Call us 24/7 at our toll-free number: 866-294-9401