After rehab for drugs and/or alcohol, the best thing you can do is focus on your sobriety. This needs to be number one, and nothing should get in the way of staying sober. Sobriety and learning how to live your life without the aid of drugs and alcohol needs to be number one. After all, good things will follow as long as you continue to stay sober.
Staying Sober After Rehab
If you are freshly out of addiction rehab, you may be wondering about different ways to help you stay sober. There are a number of things that you can do to decrease your chances of a relapse and make sure you are successful in your recovery.
Here are a few of our favorites:
- Sobriety ALWAYS comes first! This is non-negotiable. If you can continue to stay sober, good things will come your way. You’ll feel better, look better, have more success, and be able to go further in your life, from whatever starting point you are at. Your sobriety is truly the door to everything else good in your life. Especially in early recovery, it is very important to focus on staying away from drugs and alcohol. This is why you’ll often hear the recommendation to stay away from new relationships in the first year. This is to protect you and create less of a chance of something getting in your way of success.
- Surround yourself with positive, sober people. The people you surround yourself with matter. A lot! If you go right back to your old crowd after rehab, chances are they will still be drinking and/or using drugs. Unfortunately, it is a lot better for those people to pull you down than it is for you to build yourself up. In early recovery, preferably even when you are in rehab, you need to take an honest inventory of the people in your life and realize who is a true friend versus who is just a drinking or drugging buddy. Knowing this difference will help to protect you from bad influences.
- Be real with yourself. It is important to be honest with yourself and where you are in your recovery. For example, if you are fresh out of rehab, it may not be the best idea to go to your friend’s keg party down the street. Temptation and triggers happen, so knowing what your limits are can help you from getting into a bad situation.
- Celebrate your accomplishments. Getting sober is hard. Many people never get help and change their life for the better. For this reason, it is important to acknowledge how hard you are working and how far you have come. Knowing this and being proud about it can help you keep going on the harder days. Take the time to congratulate yourself and celebrate small accomplishments like significant lengths of your sobriety, getting your first job sober, or saving enough for your own car. Little steps amount to a healthy and happy lifestyle that deserves to be acknowledged.
- Take things one day at a time. As we have stressed, small, day-by-day accomplishments add up to major positive life changes. Many people fear sobriety because they idea of staying sober “forever” is too daunting and overwhelming. All you need to do is focus on each day as it passes. Before you know it, you’ll rack up more sober time and your cravings will be lesser.
Everyone’s recovery is individual. While you are in treatment, it is important to work with your doctors and therapists to come up with a solid plan for your life after rehab. There are many things you can do, like participate in a long-term treatment plan. If you don’t have the time for that, seeing a therapist on a regular basis can help. Twelve-step meetings are a great way to check in with your sobriety daily and make sure you are continuing to work towards a sober life.
Many people opt to stay in sober living homes when they first leave rehab. It is a great option because it provides support and accountability, which is exactly what many people lack when they return back home after treatment. Just remember to do everything you can to stay sober, and everything else will fall into place over time.