Addiction takes a large toll on you and everyone close to you. Making the decision to move past this part of your life and seek addiction treatment is one of the bravest decisions you can make. As you look toward facing a sober life, you are full of mixed emotions but the hope is often among the strongest. Another emotion that is also often strong is uncertainty. No, you are uncertain that you want to embark on this drug and alcohol-free life, but part of you wonders if you are strong enough to get sober, and then stay sober. We believe you are. It is important, however, that you approach the idea with a plan.
Getting sober will take the least amount of time, and a great deal of effort. This is something that you have probably considered for a while now and may even have tried before.
1. Make a Commitment. This is the first step. You know you want to put your addiction behind you. Making the decision to seek addiction treatment is important. It has been determined in many studies that going it alone during this crucial period is not the best way to succeed. Some people do, but they are far between. Make up your mind that no matter how difficult the time you are about to face happens to be, the rewards are so much greater. Don’t get sober for others, although that can be part of the reason. Do it because you deserve and want it.
2. Detox Both Your Body and Mind. This means completing a rehab program. The rehab needs to include not only freeing your body from the addiction that has held you captive for so long but freeing your mind from the idea that you need this substance. You can plan on spending close to a year going through a structured program that includes physical detox, group and individual counseling, and re-learning life skills that will prepare you for making better decisions in the future.
3. Plan For the Future. You can’t simply say “live sober” and leave it at that. The best way to be successful at recovery is the same as any other major endeavor. That is to make a plan on how you are going to stay sober. What does your future life look like to you and how do you plan on making it happen?
Staying sober requires creating a plan on how you plan to proceed once your addiction treatment is complete. Sometimes the things that appear the simplest are the most effective. Other things may take more time to get into place. By concentrating on the below, you will have over half the battle won.
A. You Need a Support Network
Nobody lives in this world alone. It is important that you have friends and family (and remember, a family doesn’t have to be blood) that you can count on to be there for you. They can be a support group of others who are overcoming addiction, a spiritual group that helps you find strength and purpose, or even a small circle of two or three close friends you know you can count on when cravings hit or doubts kick in.
B. A Healthy Lifestyle
Years of addiction can take your health. Your internal organs are damaged, your immune system is low, and even your skin and hair aren’t what they should be. Taking the time to create an eating and exercise plan will help you get your health back on track. With well-balanced meals and regular physical activity, your body can do things like create natural endorphins and fight off stress and illness much better.
C. Create Balance
It is often tempting to give up one addiction and replace it with another. Not all addictions come disguised as drugs and alcohol. Create a healthy balance of activities in your life so you don’t become focused on only one thing. A well-rounded existence includes work and leisure, socializing and alone time, indoor and outdoor activities. Use your new-found energy to experience all that life has to offer.
Getting sober takes only a small amount of time compared to staying sober. It won’t be an easy path all the time. There will be cravings and times when you wonder if you can return to substance use without the downfall. You may even slide backward a step temporarily. Just don’t give up. Find out what went wrong and make provisions to block that from happening again and then keep moving forward. You’ve got this!
If you or someone you love are struggling with addiction, do NOT be afraid to reach out. At Warner Park Recovery, it is our mission to help you get on the right path to sobriety. Addiction is a battle often fought alone and we are here to change that. Contact us today.