Most people come into recovery broken and miserable and are usually just looking for a way to stop drinking and using drugs. Each person has a different experience.
Some people find happiness naturally, whereas others have to work at it a little more. When people are actively using, they use drugs and alcohol to feel happy in the beginning or use them as a buffer for everything they do that makes them happy. Considering this, it’s no surprise that it can be difficult in the beginning to do the things they used to view as “fun” without drugs or alcohol. However, there are many different ways to have a happy recovery from addiction.
No one has ever said that addiction recovery is easy. In fact, regaining one’s sanity, sobriety, and serenity after battling drug or alcohol abuse is one of the hardest things a person can ever do. But this doesn’t mean that recovery has to be miserable. Rather, it should be celebrated for the amazing and positive shift in life that it is!
Just as your addiction was riddled with bad habits, it’s important to establish good habits in your recovery. Below are some tips on how to be sober and happy in your recovery from addiction and make the most out of it!
Jumping into recovery without a plan can lead to lots of stress. Setting goals can be super beneficial to feeling like you have some direction in your life. Some goals you can set include reaching your 30-day sobriety mark, making amends with someone you may have hurt in active addiction, not missing any 12-step meetings, and so on.
Not only will it make you happier, but it will also benefit you in the long run. It can be easier to give up the lifestyle of drugs and alcohol if you take it one step at a time and set small and achievable goals along the way.
The thing about addiction is that it becomes the center of your focus. All of the things you may have enjoyed doing before – hiking, drawing, reading, making music – are pushed to the back burner. A great way to combat the all-encompassing feeling of addiction and get back into your life before drugs and alcohol is to return to the habits you once enjoyed.
If you’re no longer interested in those things, find new habits. Go out there and find out what you enjoy doing and what hobbies interest you. Try painting, hiking, yoga, and anything you want. Remember, you are a different person than you were in addiction or even before addiction, so your interests may have changed. Go explore what makes you happy.
It’s no secret that drugs and alcohol take a toll on your physical and mental health, which is why it’s important to take care of both in recovery. An easy way to do this is to go to all of your regular doctor’s appointments. This includes a check-up with a physician, dentist, OB/GYN (for women), and any other specialist you may need to see if you have a particular ailment.
If you find yourself struggling with your mental health, don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional about that, too. Our rehab center offers both addiction and mental health treatment in Pompano, so we understand the importance of tackling both the mind and body in recovery. We offer various mental health services that could offer you the support you need.
TV and cell phones offer various entertainment, especially with all the advancements and new technology our generation is offering. However, it’s easy to become too invested in these things to the point where you’re relying on them to keep you entertained and even replace the consuming nature of drugs and alcohol. Instead, make an effort to put your phone down, turn off the TV, and be present. Go for a walk and enjoy nature or go spend time with loved ones.
If you try to keep positive thoughts in your mind, it can make a world of difference. You can choose to be happy. You don’t have to wait for happiness to find you. Decide that you will be happy and you will. Thoughts are a powerful thing.
We tend to adopt the habits of the people we spend the most time with, so what better way to find happiness in sobriety than to surround yourself with happy and positive people? Doing so could also encourage you to end relationships with people who may have encouraged your drug or alcohol use in the past and instead become closer to people who encourage your sobriety.
Doing volunteer work and dedicating time to helping others can take away the focus from the challenges in your recovery and help you apply your strengths and skills to others in need. Volunteer work is also a great way to fill in the gaps in your schedule and combat boredom, and it’s immediately gratifying. It’s also a reminder of how much you can do when you’re sober and how present you can be for yourself and others.
Don’t neglect to spend time with loved ones or do things you love. Sobriety doesn’t have to be boring. You just have to learn how to have fun without drugs or alcohol. Fortunately, there are plenty of sober activities you can try by yourself or with loved ones that can help you experience some joy and laughter as you adjust to a sober lifestyle.
Making friends that are also in recovery can be very rewarding for many different reasons. You have people to talk to and connect with who share some of the same feelings that you have and have gone through similar experiences to yours. Find sober support and friends who are sober just like you.
Going to meetings can also make you happy. Even if you don’t want to go to a meeting, just go! Remember that there are plenty of people there who feel just as awkward and uncomfortable, but everyone appreciates that one person who speaks their mind, participates, and opens the floor for conversation. Your presence at a meeting can mean so much more than you think.
Experiencing a happy recovery from addiction is possible. While it can be a struggle to cope with triggers, cravings, old drinking buddies, and other challenges that life throws our way, it’s not impossible, and the reward is worth it. If you need additional support in recovery, our Pompano Beach treatment center offers an alumni recovery program that can expose you to others in the recovery community and give you a safe space to speak to counselors and sponsors.
Finding joy in recovery is possible, but you have to take that first step. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol or drug addiction, please call Banyan Treatment Centers today at 888-280-4763 to find out how our Pompano Beach drug rehab can help.