Looking back over past behavior has some value, I suppose. The consequences of past behavior tell me I need to change, and hope tells me I can change. Both are important. Reviewing the damage that was done in the past can provide conviction that you are destroying the very thing you were trying to build. Looking back provides a reason to change and yet it does not provide the motivation to do so. Scolding yourself for digging a hole does not get the hole filled.
Turning It Around
Acknowledging the consequences of the addiction and taking a fierce and thorough inventory is a necessary step. It is the pivot point upon which recovery turns. Repentance, making amends, restitution, and reconciliation are all ways of moving forward.
When you drive a car, glancing backward in the tiny rearview mirror is an appropriate way to determine what is behind you. Spending a couple of seconds now and then looking back seems right. However, the major focus while at the wheel is to look forward through the comparatively much larger windshield in the direction you are traveling.
So it is in recovery, most of your time needs to be focused on where you are going, not where you have been. Moving forward in hope, you can be confident that your recovery efforts will change your life.
There Is Hope
Hope is the belief there are good things ahead for you. You are not where you were. You are headed in a different and better direction. Having acknowledged the problems and consequences of the past, it benefits you little to keep staring at them.
Use the past to determine how and where to make the necessary changes. Once you do, you can look forward to a positive and hopeful future. Keep your vision in front of you. You will work again, love again, raise your own children, go to school, and contribute to others. The acknowledgement of the consequences of the past and the hope for a positive future, combine their efforts to move you forward toward a fulfilling life of recovery.
Recovery is a journey. Enjoy the ride!