Leap to recovery: Overcoming addiction one extra day at a time

The saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day” hits close to home when we talk about recovering from addiction. In this blog, we’re walking you through what rehab and recovery really look like, all under the theme of taking it one day at a time. The idea of rehab can be pretty scary, mainly because it’s venturing into the unknown. We’re here to peel back the curtain on rehab, making it feel a little less like stepping into a mystery. By unpacking the journey step by step, we hope to shine a light on the road ahead.

Acknowledging the issue

Recognising you’re struggling with addiction is a crucial first step on the road to recovery. It’s the moment you move from ignoring the problem to facing it head-on. This acceptance is vital; it lays the groundwork for everything that follows. Without acknowledging there’s an issue, it’s nearly impossible to seek help or make any meaningful changes. But this moment goes beyond just owning up to a habit or behaviour—it’s about understanding its toll on your life and the lives of those around you.

People arrive at this crucial turning point through different paths. For some, it’s a slow slide into dependence, with the substance or behaviour starting as a way to deal with stress or emotional pain. What may have begun as infrequent use or behaviour gradually becomes indispensable. For others, it can be the realisation that the party is over and they never truly left.

Looking back at life before this turning point can stir up mixed feelings. There might be fond memories of better times before addiction took hold, mixed with regret over missed opportunities, damaged relationships or perhaps even a lost sense of identity. Yet, this reflection is a critical step forward, offering a hard look at the price of addiction and a hint of hope for a brighter future.

The path to recovery is filled with frequent, and sometimes daily, hurdles, yet starting with the admission of addiction paves the way for transformation. Taking this brave first step shows a willingness to tackle the problem directly and begin the healing process. Standing at this crossroads, reflecting on the past and looking ahead to recovery, individuals are ready to take on the necessary challenges. These steps, while daunting, are necessary and lead towards a process that often begins with detoxification, setting the stage for the hard but rewarding work of rebuilding a life free from addiction.


The detox stage is the process of removing substances from the body, and it’s the first step after acknowledging you need help. While some might consider detoxing at home, it’s not the safest route. Detoxing should always be done under the watchful eye of medical professionals. This is because withdrawal can bring about a range of symptoms that are not only uncomfortable but can also be dangerous. Facilities like UKAT offer a secure environment where detox can be managed more safely and effectively.

Detoxification is a complex process. Movies or TV shows often depict characters entering rehabilitation looking dishevelled and on edge, but after a seemingly brief ‘vacation,’ they return looking rejuvenated. Even series like Breaking Bad, which generally provides a more accurate portrayal of addiction, misses the mark. The show features Jesse attending rehab to overcome a methamphetamine addiction. We witnessed his admission into rehab, his participation in a few group discussions, and his healthier appearance upon completion. While it’s true that many individuals appear much healthier after completing rehab, the show, along with many others, tends to overlook the detoxification stage entirely.

This stage can be particularly challenging due to the uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms that individuals experience during this period.

Symptoms can range from mild anxiety and cravings to more severe ones like seizures or hallucinations. That’s why being in a detox centre, under the care of doctors and nurses, is crucial. They can provide medications to ease these symptoms, making the process more bearable.

Once detox is complete, it’s time for therapy. This is where the real work begins—learning new ways to cope without substances and understanding the root causes of addiction.


Therapy in addiction rehab goes beyond just overcoming physical dependency; it’s about digging deep to uncover and tackle the psychological and emotional roots of addiction. It’s a journey of understanding that being addicted doesn’t define a person, a realisation that Sarah, one of our former clients, experienced as a powerful milestone on her path to recovery. Therapy aims to strip away the layers of addiction, exposing the core issues that must be confronted and resolved.


“…here (at Sanctuary Lodge rehab) my 1-2-1 counsellor made me realise so many things and she helped me get an insight into myself. I realised that I wasn’t just an addict – I needed to sort things out.” – Sarah, former client at Sanctuary Lodge.


Sarah’s experience at Sanctuary Lodge rehab highlights the transformative journey therapy can offer in addiction recovery. Her story is a powerful testament to the deep personal insights and growth that can come from such therapeutic encounters. It beautifully captures the essence of therapy in rehab: creating a supportive space for individuals to discover themselves, face their issues and start healing.

At this point, you’re not taking to the idea of therapy and we understand. Sarah didn’t initially either;


“You have to say your name, what you are (alcoholic/drug addict/porn addict, etc.) and two feelings that you have at that time. I thought it was **** at the time but it gives you a voice and the therapist remembers the two feelings. If you have the same two feelings by the third meeting, they will ask you about it and get you to open up. They will use the feelings to ask you questions and before you know it you are speaking.”


We can see that a very honest Sarah stated that it took a few times and help from the therapist to open up and talk. This is why it’s crucial to take each day as it comes. When addiction casts a shadow over the mind, it can make the journey of self-discovery and addressing personal issues incredibly difficult. It acts like a veil, hiding self-awareness and making the truth about yourself harder to face. Therapy provides a safe and structured space where you can cut through this haze. It helps you gain a deeper insight into your actions, feelings and what triggers you, offering a clearer path forward.

Once these triggers are understood, therapy offers the chance to learn how to control them. This could be through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) or Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), both proven to be fantastic forms of therapy for learning how to change thought processes and behaviours. But this doesn’t happen overnight; both these forms of therapy can be beneficial throughout the entirety of your stay and even after you leave our facilities. Again, the message is clear: take each day as it comes.

Completing rehab

The journey of recovery doesn’t stop the moment you step outside the recovery centre. It’s more of a marathon than a sprint, unfolding one day at a time. The path isn’t always smooth, and sometimes, the dreaded ‘R’ word—relapse—can make an unwelcome appearance. But it’s not the setback it seems to be. Instead, think of a relapse as a detour that shows you where the road was rough, teaching you valuable lessons and giving you a chance to patch things up and keep moving forward.

To make sure you’re walking this path with others, we’ve got a safety net ready for you. Our aftercare program offers additional therapy and access to a community of folks who’ve been right where you are. Connecting with our alumni network means you’re part of a group that gets it, drawing strength and inspiration from others’ stories and victories. Remember, every step, even the ones that may seem backward, is part of your journey to a stronger you.

What are the next steps?

If you or a loved one is currently facing addiction, remember you don’t have to face it alone. Our team of expert medical professionals are ready and waiting to guide you in your recovery journey. Reach out to UKAT today for further assistance.

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UK Addiction Treatment Group.

We look forward to helping you take your first step.

03301 736 751