5 Rules to Never Break in Recovery
The journey to sobriety is different for everyone- there’s no one way to overcome addiction. Cookie cutter treatment programs and staunch restrictions are ineffective and can be discouraging. Personalized programs which focus on the individual and their unique stories, marrying traditional and holistic methods in ways that work for you offer the best foundations for one’s sober life.
Even so, recovery does require structure. When in recovery, these are the 5 rules you should never break!
Your path to sobriety is a journey for a reason. True and profound change takes time; be patient with yourself and never stop moving forward. No matter how long it takes, how many retries and slip-ups there are, so long as you keep trying, you have never failed.
Be patient with yourself throughout the recovery process- be patient with the process itself. Remain open to the aid of your nurses, doctors, therapists, and counselors. Take your time rediscovering yourself outside of substance abuse.
Stay Within Your Limits
Be smart, not strong. Recovery and sobriety aren’t about how much you can endure or unnecessarily forcing yourself to withstand triggers. The primary goal of rehabilitation is to uncover the underlying causes of addiction and substance abuse and address them properly.
That means learning what triggers your urges and cravings and how to avoid them. You learn methods of coping with those triggers which can not be avoided and what healthy behavioral alternatives are available to prevent relapse.
Knowing where your limits lie and steering clear of them; tiptoeing along them is all but guaranteeing that one day you will topple over into the wrong side. That’s not to say your commitment to stay sober is a limitation on what you can do- in fact, sobriety opens up endless possibilities!
Stay Away From Enablers and Nay-Sayers
This one is perhaps the most important- your sobriety can easily be derailed by the company you keep. That’s why there’s such an emphasis on re-evaluating your inner circle throughout rehabilitation.
It’s pretty easy to see why we would want to remove naysayers from our lives while on a path of recovery, but what about enablers? Enablers are the people in our lives who facilitate situations that can lead to relapse. Enabling behavior may even seem like support, but can in fact be detrimental to your recovery. How do you identify enablers? Look out for these behaviors:
- Continued use of illicit substances, especially in your presence
- Conscious overlooking of negative habits or signs of relapse
- Financial support of substance abuse
- Excusing, deflecting, or defending damaging behavior
Download our eBook ‘It Takes a Village’ for more information about how to your support system affects your recovery!
Keep Your Eyes on Your Goals
Beyond the health benefits of leading a sober life, what other reasons are behind your decision to begin your sober journey? What are the things your want to accomplish after rehab? Do you have plans to go back to school or start a business? Will you travel? Write a book? Whatever you want to do- write it down, plan it out, and make it happen!
Break down each of your goals into smaller, attainable objectives. Hold yourself to reasonable deadlines and work to meet them- it’s within your grasp! Don’t let negative self-talk get in your way- after all, you thought sobriety would be impossible, too, right?
Focusing on your goals can help keep you firmly on the path of sobriety, too! Plus, nothing beats that swell of pride when you can check a new accomplishment off your list- even if it’s a small one. Need help starting? Don’t worry- we’ve got you covered!
No one ever said recovery or sobriety had to be boring! This is the perfect opportunity to learn how to have fun, relax, and enjoy yourself without the aid of drugs or alcohol!
Need some ideas? Why not try:
- Join a club or a MeetUp group
- Take a dance, art, or cooking class
- Explore your local art or literature scene
- Get out and play! Bowling, laser tag, go-karts, etc.
- Go to a concert
- Host a BBQ or potluck
What rules for recovery do you think should never be broken? Leave them in the comments below!
Keep Up With Trending Addiction News
About the Author
Alexandrea Holder is a South Florida native working toward double Master’s degrees in Psychology and English. She finds the psychological aspects of addiction and mental illness fascinating, as both are prevalent in her family’s history. When not researching and spreading addiction awareness, Alexandrea enjoys sparring, artistic pursuits, and admiring puppies online.