Among many false beliefs concerning addiction treatment therapy, one seems to be the most common and it includes people thinking that once the therapy is over, there’s nothing else we could do to stay sober other than contacting an alcohol or drug help hotline at AddictionResource.com every time we feel the urge to give in to our former vice.
The truth regarding addiction treatment is quite the opposite.
While experts agree that therapy is essential for a person’s recovery process, there is a whole lot of work left for us to do so we could keep living a sober lifestyle.
We’ll try and show you some of the most important steps you should take and secure a life full of excitement and challenges beyond the boundaries of addiction.
6 Things You Must Do for a Sober Life
1. Develop a Supportive Environment
2. Fill in Your Day
3. Block Potential Triggers
5. Implementation Intention Protocol
6. Be Flexible
When you’re done with counseling and therapy, it’s important to keep yourself surrounded by people who would support your new way of life.
Alcohol and drug addiction go beyond the physical and psychological damage, they also leave a deep mark on our social and economic agenda.
Also, separation from family and friends is one of the most common symptoms, leaving a person with nobody else to call but a drug help hotline.
Therefore, it’s not a bad idea to keep in touch with people who had similar problems and join a support group.
You could find a sponsor who would stay with you throughout those initial days of coming back to the real world.
Also, try and make contact with your friends and family members and ask for their support.
As a person fresh out of the therapy room, it might come as a surprise to learn you have so much free time on your hands now that it’s not filled with alcohol or drug addiction helpline calls, planning your next hit, or trying to make money to support your addiction.
Plan your daily activities so you don’t have any substantial gaps during obligations, it will make the time pass much easier and you won’t fall into temptation.
Plan at least one day in your week to dedicate to your progress and talk to a therapist. Meet people or reignite an old hobby.
Whatever makes you feel good and focused on endeavors other than thinking about your life before you decided to turn sober again.
Some of these relapse triggers are personal, others are environmental, as well as those caused by the treatment system.
No matter their nature, it’s of utmost importance to recognize the triggers and find a way to block them before we give in and get ourselves in the position of dialing that well-known rehab number once again.
Therefore, to fight off your triggers, you should work both on your own and with your therapist to make a comprehensive list of dangers that might put your health and life in danger.
As much as we’d like to get back on the social wagon and reconnect with our friends and family, meet new people, fall in love, it’s important to maintain healthy boundaries.
You need to convey to your friends and loved ones that some boundaries need to be checked between you and everyone else, at least until you’re able to cross those lines.
If this means not going out to a place you know would trigger your craving or asking a person to put down the cigarette to continue your date, so be it.
It’s far better returning home alone then having your date contacting overdose hotline and hope that it will save your life.
Although it might seem easy enough to sit down and put a list of potential triggers on a piece of paper, it’s inarguably a greater challenge blocking off every dodge ball that comes flying our way.
Therefore, it’s safe to assume that at one point we’ll fall into temptation or hear that song that crushes through our defenses and takes us back on the dark path.
An implementation intention is a system of self-regulation that allows us to act upon a certain incident in a manner we previously plan out.
Therefore, if your goal is to avoid going to a bar because it puts you in danger of drinking alcohol again, you have to put in motion a strategy in case you just can’t escape from going into a bar for date or friend’s birthday.
You can say to yourself that if you go to a bar, you’ll order a Coke and stay in until you drink it.
This will help you avoid redialing addiction recovery hotline and live a normal life.
You went to rehab because you wanted to make your life better and live free of any unwanted bondages. Don’t let your sober lifestyle become an obstacle towards a normal life you’ve had before your addiction kicked in.
The more you lose those ropes, the better you’ll feel and less stress you’ll suffer when planning your daily life.
Keep in mind the basics of your relapse prevention but try to live your life as openly as you can, you deserved it.
The path to healing is long and often painful but the results bring far greater prizes.
These simple steps should help you find your way after the therapy and allow you to sink in into regular life.
No matter how hard it might be, trust in yourself and keep thinking about the future that waits for you only if you meet it sober.
If, at any point, you don’t feel strong enough to cope with your passion, turn to your friends or therapist for support, there’s no need to go through it alone.