When it comes to getting sober, most of us find ourselves so caught up in the goal of getting clean that we don’t stop to think about who we’ll be after the fact. A lot of us make the mistake in assuming that once we’re sober, all of our problems will just magically go away and life will be great! But the truth is that, in many ways, sobriety is really just the beginning of the journey. Instead of viewing it as daunting, however, look at this time as a fresh opportunity to reconnect with yourself and what you really want out of life. And don’t worry– you’re not alone! Here’s a short guide to help you on your way:
Understand Why It’s Important to Find Yourself
As you’ve probably already learned by now, sobriety is not a single point that you reach. Instead, it’s a maintained consciousness and ongoing effort to remain clean and not slip back into the throes of addiction. The good news is that many people find that the longer they’re sober, the easier it becomes! That said, one of the most important factors in staying sober is being able to function comfortably and clearly as a person. By figuring out key things like who you are, what you stand for and what you want out of life, you create new things for yourself to focus on. Finding yourself gives you a new lease on life and allows you to apply real purpose and meaning to sobriety.
Face Your Problems
Being sober doesn’t make your problems go away, but it does allow you the opportunity to finally address them. You’re finally thinking clearly, so it’s only natural that your problems may seem a little more vivid and present than they were before. They were always there– addiction just masked them! Let your newfound clarity energize you to tackle your problems head on!
That said, don’t be intimidated if some things take longer to fix than others. Many of us suffer from addiction for years, and so the problems that entered our lives either before or during it aren’t just going to go away overnight. All good things come with time.
Reestablish or Create New Goals
When we’re struggling with addiction, our goals often become misaligned or even lost entirely. Take a quiet moment to sit down with just a pen and some paper, and write down any previous goals you had that addiction prevented you from achieving. Then, cross out any you no longer wish to pursue and write down any new goals you may have for your life. They can be anything from buying something nice for yourself to reconnecting with friends and family members. Some people even use their newfound sobriety to pursue a whole new career!
Try New Activities
Let’s face it; your previous activity was engaging in the unhealthy behavior of addiction. It’s time to find some new ways to spend your time. Many use their spare time now to focus on friends and family, while others try new hobbies and explore their interests. Some choose to refocus their time to follow tips an activities for a healthier lifestyle in general. The more you spend your spare time in a fun, engaging way, the less you’ll think about addiction. Either way, having activities that you enjoy is another key to staying sober for the long term.
Don’t Be Too Hard on Yourself
It’s okay if you find yourself struggling more than you thought you would. Sobriety is hard at times! Life, in general, is difficult! But that doesn’t mean you should give up. Remember that each struggle is a reminder that you’re actually on a good path. Take time to think about your positive qualities (if you need help with this, start with your fantastic decision to get sober!). Know that you are valuable as a person and that it’s okay to make mistakes sometimes. You’re only human!
Sometimes we also tend to look back on our lives under addiction and think negatively about ourselves. While addiction certainly isn’t a good thing, there’s no reason to let your past rule your present life. Work now to amend any past mistakes that you can, and know that some are going to require more time than others. Don’t be so hard on yourself for your past errors or any current setbacks you may experience from time to time– After all, the one person you’re stuck with for the rest of your life is you!
How a Treatment Program Can Help
You’re embarking on a difficult journey, but you don’t need to do it all by yourself. As we said earlier, you’re not alone in your quest to free yourself from addiction, nor are you alone when it comes to finding yourself in the process. At Rise in Malibu, we focus on providing not just world-class treatment, but also a supportive network of people who understand exactly what you’re going through. Sometimes all it takes is a shoulder to cry on or a friend to vent to. Other times, it just helps to bounce your thoughts and ideas off of someone who knows where you’re coming from. Whatever it takes, we’re here to help you get to know the new, clean and sober you! Contact us today.