How to Survive Your First Year as a Small Business Owner While in Recovery
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Suffering through addiction is probably one of the hardest things that anyone has to do. To become addicted and then conquer the habit, emerging sober and healthier, is a rite of passage like no other. I struggled with an addiction myself for many years and experienced great struggles and difficulties because of it. I am immensely grateful that I was able to come out the other end clean and recovered, because I know the sheer impact that addiction has on people, how many of whom do not make it out of the other end successfully. I consider myself lucky. I have my rehab center to thank for my sobriety, as well as my own determination to make it through, to survive, and to better myself as a result of it.
Addiction has a very negative impact on people. Not only does it ruin the lives of those who are addicted, it also affects the lives of the addict's family members and loved ones. I read from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, (SAMHSA) that:
"Drug use is on the rise in this country and 23.5 million Americans are addicted to alcohol and drugs."
Addiction is so prevalent in this nation that it still shocks me to this day. And it's not just the addicts I'm worried about, but their families as well. I read about a survey done by the Faces and Voices Recovery Campaign that
'More than two-thirds of American families have been touched by addiction, either with alcohol or drugs.
This all worries me, and this is why I am a businessman and a business owner in recovery and why I use my rehab centers to make positive change on the addiction crisis that this nation faces.
***How to Own a Business While in Recovery***
I can say from experience that owning a business while also being in recovery is not an easy thing to do. Heck, we can all agree that just owning your own business by itself can be a real challenge and is a lot more difficult and a lot more work than simply getting a job working for someone else is. When you are going through a recovery on top of that and you add in an attempt to stay sober, to stay clean, and to stay abstinent from drugs and alcohol in there too, you get a pretty tricky and sometimes quite difficult situation to say the least.
However, if your goal is to start and own your own business, then don't let that stop you! Don't get held back by something just because your situation in life makes it more difficult than the average bear. Don't let your past experiences with addiction and substance abuse slow you down, rather let them give you strength, resolve, perseverance, zeal, and an insistence to accomplish greatness and get what you want in life. This is the only way that you are going to be able to win in the long run, and if you let your history with substance abuse control you, then it will do just that; control you.
Here's what I can tell you that I applied to my first year of opening and owning a rehabilitation center while in recovery:
Turn your recovery into your fuel, not your crutch. This was probably the key to my success. I knew once I completed my own rehab program that I needed to find and do something that truly made a difference and that would truly mean something for the world. I channeled my recovery and my inspiration to give back to the community and my desire to help others into an unbending will that helped me push through those first few difficulties that any business owner experiences in the first year of having a business.
Constantly adjust and reinvent your plan. If I've seen businesses fail from one reason I would say that it was because they could not adjust with the times even on a month to month basis. When you are starting and running a business, you have to be able to roll with the punches and adjust quickly. Just like how when you are in recovery you have to be able to adapt and assume control over situations rapidly, and the same goes for starting a business. If a business technique that was working a month ago stops working, then scrap it and begin anew. Don't beat a dead horse and kill your business by following business models that are no longer working.
Always be thinking in the future. So many theories and wise men say, "Be here now." I feel that is true in some sectors in life, but not when you are starting a business, and certainly not when you are in recovery. Rather than focusing on what you have to do today, think about where your business should be in a month, and what you have to do today to get it to that point a month from now.
Rather than using your recovery as something that limits you or makes you more timid, I encourage you to pursue your dreams and your goals and take life by the horns and just own it. You will be better off and happier and more stable in your recovery if you do just that.
Per Wickstrom is the founder and CEO of Best Drug Rehabilitation, one of the top holistic rehabilitation centers in the country. He found sobriety after a decades-long struggle with addiction and has since dedicated his life and career to helping others find the same life-affirming success he has. His program is based on natural and holistic methods and has helped lead hundreds to recovery. Connect with Per via Twitter or Facebook.
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