Recovery is a journey. It begins with a single step but does not end when you reach sobriety. It is a lifetime of work. Though it may be difficult at times, with a strong support network and some consistent work, your sobriety can flourish.
You have made it through treatment and you are living a life free of drugs and alcohol. You are enjoying the new life you are creating and seeing how fulfilling a sober lifestyle can be. But you have to protect yourself from slipping back into addiction because bumps can come along on the road. What are some ways to continue your new clean lifestyle?
According to Helpguide.org, not only does recovery involve an initial treatment and recovery strategy, but then it requires a strong network of aftercare and positive influences, as well as an avoidance of negative triggers.
Positive influences are essential in forming a strong network, and perhaps it is time to find a new group of peers for social interaction. If your old crowd is consistently going out to clubs and bars and using drugs and alcohol, they are not going to be the most supportive network for you. It is probably best to dissociate from them, at least in this atmosphere. Your support group needs to be willing to take on sober activities with you. Helpguide.org states: “The more people you can turn to for encouragement, guidance, and a listening ear, the better your chances for recovery.”
Finding New Friends
That may mean cutting off some relationships and forming some new ones. Sober friends are important now, and you can form some new relationships by joining new groups and social outlets, whether a religious group, an outdoor group, a book club or exercise group. Look for things you like and that you can do in a sober environment. Here is where you will find a good support network. Also, do not be afraid to lean on your sober friends and family. These are the people who will stay there for you regardless of your past history, and they could be a huge help.
Finding Positive Outlets
Often people turn to drugs and alcohol to deal with stress. You have to find new outlets for that now, and the support of your family and friends will be helpful here. Sometimes, though, you just have yourself to turn to, and by teaching yourself new ways of support and coping, you will have an easier time with recovery. Here are some healthy ways to deal with stress by being your own support network:
- Exercise. Whether it is a yoga class or a run outside, exercise can do wonders for stress relief. Maybe you enjoy exercise alone, or else grab a buddy and hit the gym.
- Read a book or find a new TV show to watch. Escape does not have to be in chemical form; you can find stress relief by watching TV or absorbing yourself in a great book or movie.
- Play with your dog. A pet can be a great support network. They depend on you and you have to be there for them. You can take a dog to the park for a walk and he will never judge you, even on your worst day.
You can find outstanding support in Ohio’s premier drug rehab,
Recovery Village Columbus. Here, you can access continued treatment through aftercare programs and strong support networks. Recovery does not end when you become sober; it stays active throughout a lifetime. Through a strong program and great support network, your new, sober life will be full of enjoyment and new opportunities.
Are you ready to get started on that life now? Contact us to learn about admissions today!
The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider.