As a recovering addict, your ultimate goal is to live a sober and happy life well into the future. While this sounds simple enough, there are several factors to consider and each one poses unique challenges. While that’s not to say that you can’t achieve long-lasting happiness, you should be prepared to work for it. In the end, the effort you put into your sobriety and happiness will be something you can look back on with pride as you enjoy all that you have accomplished.
The first step in this process is to get sober and to develop the skills that will help you stay clean. This often involves going through a detox program to help you get clean. Most addicts have tried and failed to quit drinking alcohol or using drugs, but, without professional help, they find it impossible to resist the cravings. A monitored detox program will involve the use of medication to keep the cravings and withdrawal symptoms under control. It also involves remaining under the supervision of caregivers who will watch for health problems that can result from the withdrawal process.
Graduate From an Addiction Recovery Program
The next step in this process is to go through an addiction treatment program. Once you complete a program successfully, you’ll have the tools to help you stay sober in normal society. The treatment program will help you recognize your triggers, so you’ll be better able to avoid them. You’ll learn how to use healthy coping mechanisms to cope with internal triggers, such as elevated stress and feelings of guilt, so you won’t become overwhelmed. You’ll also learn how to cope with external triggers, such as easy accessibility to alcohol or drugs.
Addiction treatment will also help you recognize the signs that you’re heading into a spiral that will lead to your relapse. One of the most recognizable signs is that you have started associating with other alcohol and drug users. Beyond that, your own self-destructive behavior must also be recognized. Watch for self-defeating thought patterns and more impulsive behaviors. When you find yourself acting on your emotions rather than rational thought, you’ll have a higher risk of relapsing.
Adopt a Healthier Lifestyle
While continuing to work on your sobriety is essential, you should also see your recovery as an opportunity to develop a healthier way of living. This starts with ensuring your body gets all of the nutrients it needs. Recent research has found that people who eat fewer fruits and vegetables and eat more processed foods are more likely to experience depression, anxiety, and other emotional illnesses. Three-quarters of every meal should consist of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. You can eat a modest portion of fish, poultry, or lean red meat.
In addition to eating right, you must exercise daily. Doctors recommend getting a minimum of 30 to 60 minutes of moderate to high intensity exercise each day. This should involve cardio exercises, such as running or swimming, and resistance training, such as weightlifting. To obtain the best results, engage in a variety of different physical activities. This will help you by working out different muscle groups throughout the body.
Take Care of Your Emotional Health
Stress can have devastating effects on your mental health, but it can also affect physical health by compromising the immune system. Many of the things that cause stress in our lives are the result of financial hardships. For this reason, it’s important to be diligent in building up a good financial profile. This starts with looking for ways to restore your credit and learning to live by a budget. You should also be setting aside at least 10% of each paycheck for your savings to ensure you have safety net to cover sudden financial emergencies.
There may be other factors that contribute to the stress you feel day to day. For that reason, you should be engaging in stress-reducing activities every day. If you feel your day is too busy for relaxation, this is a sign that you definitely need it. Schedule one hour of time for relaxation in your appointment calendar if necessary. During this time, you can meditate, practice yoga, go for a hike, or engage in any hobby that relaxes you.
The first step in living a sober and happy life is to get clean. When you call us at 954-523-1167, our counselors will answer any questions you have about the recovery process. We’re available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help you get started on a sober and bright future.