At some point during their journey of recovery, every addict reaches a more comfortable place where they feel more confident about their ability to remain sober. After a while; however, recovery can feel like a routine, and boredom and complacency can set in.

What you need to realize most of all is that this is enemy number one. Complacency is the killer in recovery that you need to watch out for. Most people get this wrong because they focus almost entirely on early recovery and the more immediate threats to their sobriety. After they find stability in early recovery they believe that the main threat is gone and that they are pretty much home free.


The dictionary defines complacency as “a feeling of quiet pleasure or security while unaware of some potential danger or defect.”  It is a false confidence in oneself.

People who do not suffer from addiction issues can afford to be complacent in some areas of their lives. Those of us in recovery must never become complacent about our sobriety.

An addict who feels complacent and lazy about their progress could backslide and even relapse in some cases. It is important to have a strategy in place before a feeling of complacency becomes problematic and endangers your recovery.

Signs of Complacency in Recovery

You Are Easily Irritated

We are told a great deal in sobriety that acceptance and humility is huge in recovery. In my experience we have to do our best to understand others and keep our motives and emotions in check. At any point in sobriety that we start getting less and less accepting of others, that we start criticizing and degrading others, or we simply lose control of our serenity and aggression dominates every conversation we are edging towards disaster.

Think You are Cured

Probably one of the biggest mistakes that results from being over confident and delusional in your recovery is believing you have come so far and changed so much that you have been cured. Do not be fooled. If you suffer from the same disease as the majority of us do, there is always more work to be done.


Often one of the first things people in recovery start to take for granted is support groups and 12 Step Program Meetings. Most of us start to feel after a period of time that we have out-grown the need to be present at group meetings and therapeutic discussions focused on recovery. This is a definite mistake. Life does show up, and work and school for some can interfere with our regular schedule of meetings, but to write them off completely as un-necessary is a sign that we are beginning to take ourselves too seriously.

What Can I Do?

  • Recognize You’re Complacent
  • Start Setting Realistic Goals
  • Get Accountable
  • Plug Back In

The real long term benefits in recovery are based on accumulation. You can only tap into these immense benefits if you are willing to put in the effort.

What defines this effort? Daily positive action. You cannot see it when you have two weeks sober and are trying to do the right thing.

But fast forward to 3 years sober and take a look at the growth you have made in recovery. Suddenly you will see that it has all been worth it! Recovery is a gift that just keeps on giving. In fact the long term gifts of sobriety becomes greater and greater as you go along. This is due to the concept of accumulation.

If you or someone you know is currently struggling with drug and alcohol addiction, give IgotSober a call 24/7 at (402) 552-8890 and speak with a knowledgeable and caring addiction professional and get the help you need today!