Up to now your addiction has imprisoned you in a self-defeating lifestyle, but you know there is a way out by getting treatment. Here are three things that can increase your chances of a sticking to a resolve to stay clean and sober following treatment.
1. Make Plans To Improve Your Life Following Treatment
When you are in recovery from addiction, there will be a vacuum in your life that will need to be filled. You will have an easier time coping if you make some plans to do things that would give your life some new meaning, improve your social life, and keep you busy doing something positive. You might consider
- going back to school and studying something that interests you. You could train for a different career, get your high school diploma, or obtain a college degree. Some colleges even have special recovery programs to assist you in this endeavor.
- taking up a activity such as painting, learning to play a musical instrument, learning to speak a new language, woodworking, jewelry making, etc. Sometimes community centers and libraries have free classes on various interests. You could try different things until you find something that is truly absorbing for you.
- taking up a sport or fitness routine. Regular exercise can help improve your mood, increase your energy level, lower drug cravings, and reduce stress. It can also improve the functioning of your brain and lessen the degree of damage that your addiction may have caused.
- seeing a nutritionist or taking a cooking class. A healthy diet and regular meals will also help you to feel better and recover quicker.
2, Remove Triggers From Your Life
You will need to change your environment as much as you can to avoid triggers that can hinder your recovery. A relocation may be good if you have supportive family or friends in the new place. You will want to avoid feeling isolated, as this could trigger a relapse.
There will be some people you may have to cut out of your life if they engage in negative behaviors that increase your stress level too much, or they otherwise serve as triggers for addictive behavior. Unless your former partners in addictive activities are also working hard to overcome their habit, they can forever be linked in your mind with substance abuse, so avoiding them is important.
Other things that serve as certain types of music, smells, sights, paraphernalia and other items, and certain environments. You should take the time to identify these and make plans to avoid them. H.A.L.T. is a common acronym for being hungry, angry, lonely, and/or tired because these conditions are known to lead to a lapse/relapse and you should avoid things than can lead to these emotions to help reduce your chances of relapse.
3. Learn to Give Yourself Credit for Your Successes
Part of your motivation to use substances may have been to silence that critical voice in your head that made you feel badly. Getting clean and sober could increase your feelings of self worth but only if you do take notice of the things you do right on a daily basis. A journal to keep a record of progress may prove helpful, and you may also want to plan rewards to give yourself additional motivation. A reward could be vacation trip, a new piece of equipment for a hobby, or a new article of clothing-- choose something that is life affirming.
To get more information on drug addiction treatment, contact a rehabilitation service in your area.