Guest Blog by: Amber Brubaker
Becoming clean and sober is an admirable step in and of itself, but staying that way is the real challenge. It takes a significant amount of willpower and a certain reliance on resources available to you. As you make a goal to abstain from your addiction, consider these tips.
1. Lean on Support
If you’ve managed to overcome an addiction, you’ve probably developed a good support system. Once you’ve renounced your addictive behaviors, keep in contact with those people. Their support will help you keep your goal.
2. Use Your Rehab Facility
If you fall back into addiction, use a good rehab facility to help you get better. The best of rehab centers, like this one, can help you get clean and on your way to a better future.
3. Buddy Up
Don’t try to do it alone. Find someone going through a similar trial who sincerely wants to get better, and stick with them. You can help each other stay clean and happy during your time of need.
4. Set Goals
Once you’re clean, it’s only the beginning. You have a lifetime of abstinence ahead of you, and you need some concrete goals to help you keep up with it. Set realistic goals to help you with your career, relationships, and daily habits.
5. Schedule It In
As you probably know, temptation is at its strongest when you’re bored. Schedule out your day to help you avoid moments of boredom. Just be careful not to make your schedule too stressful, since stress is another trigger for addictive behavior.
Organization can be a significant tool in your efforts to be better each day. Organize your environment. Make it clean and functional so that it fosters good feelings. Focus your time and priorities so that you’re able to accomplish the most important things each day.
7. Join Groups
Hopefully you have a good formal support group who has helped you through your time of need. Stick with that group, but also look for other groups and societies you can join, such as church or sports groups, or any other group that shares your healthy interests. Doing so will help you to identify with other healthy, yet enjoyable things.
8. Work Out
Exercise has long been known for its mental and physical health benefits. It can be a good outlet for pent up stress and anxiety, both well-known triggers for your addiction. Work out with a buddy if possible.
9. Learn a New Thing
Seek out skills, both old and new. Learning a new skill can help you find something that you really enjoy and that makes you happy so that you can focus on something other than your past addiction.
10. Seek Out Good, Clean Fun
Though it may not have seemed like it in the past, it is possible to have fun without the aid of a substance. Enjoy the magic of movies, board games, alcohol-free parties, sports, and more as you search for activities you can fully enjoy. You can have fun and remember every minute of it!
11. Serve Others
One of the greatest ways to improve your mental health is to get outside of yourself. Doing something meaningful for others is a great way to relieve the pressure of your own issues.
12. Become a Mentor
With your experience in becoming clean, you’re a prime candidate for mentoring, and it’s one of the best things you can do to stay clean. You’ll also receive the satisfaction accompanied with helping someone else while consciously focusing on being a good example of sobriety.
Connecting with your inner you is an important part of staying sober, and meditation is a great way to do just that. It will help you be honest with yourself, relax, and recognize the many things you have, helping you stick with your goal of sobriety.
Your addiction probably resulted in a few lost relationships. Reconnecting with a few of those people may help you to keep your goals. It can broaden your support circle and give you more reasons to fight the addiction.
15. Find New Hobbies
Chances are, many of your old hobbies involved something to do with your addiction. Now is the time to form new, healthy hobbies to help you enjoy life to the fullest. Test out a few different activities and discover what you really love to do. It might be fishing, hiking, reading, songwriting, crafting, or any other number of healthy and entertaining activities.
16. Keep a Journal
A journal is the best place to record your emotions as you strive to remain clean and sober. You can write down your goals, make plans to keep them, and vent when you’re having a particularly tough day.
Though staying sober certainly isn’t easy, the journey is incredibly rewarding. Your determination will bring success and a new life filled with meaning.
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