Help With Staying Sober After Rehab
Staying sober in rehab is easy. The real battle for sobriety starts when you return to normal life. To be successful, you’re going to need a sobriety plan for when pressure builds up and temptations arise.
That’s where these 5 tools for staying sober after leaving rehab come in:
- Sober Support
- Mental Health Assistance
- Pleasurable Distractions
- Diet and Exercise
No one stays sober alone. The first item in your bag of tricks should always be support. Ideally, the support of people who’ve been successful in recovery. Here’s where to find other sober people to help you:
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) are the most popular, but there’s countless others.
Celebrate Recovery, Rational Recovery, SMART Recovery and Refuge Recovery are the most common. There should be local groups in your area. A quick internet search can help you find a group quickly. Asking mental health facilities or rehabilitation centers may also provide groups you can join.
Mental Health Groups
Many counseling facilities have group therapy sessions overseen by a counselor. These groups are common in Intensive Outpatient Settings. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) classes are common.
If you belong to a religious organization, there may be alternative recovery choices. Discuss your situation with an administrator. Choose a support group that is nearby and accessible. The more you attend, the more your chances at long-term recovery improve.
Mental Health Assistance
Beyond the casual support of friends and loved ones, professional aid can also be genuinely helpful. Someone trained in mental health can assist you in coping with difficult feelings.
Finding a therapist or counselor that suits you is of paramount importance. Trust your instincts on this. You may need to shop around to find the right one. Find someone you connect with and you’re more likely to achieve success.
You can also ask the rehab facility for aftercare recommendations. They can almost always set you up with help to succeed.
The reason we used alcohol or drugs was to feel better. When we don’t feel good in sobriety, sobriety eventually fades.
Luckily, when we’re sober, the entire world becomes our playground. We can go anywhere and do anything, except use. Bliss can be found in the most unlikely of places. We are able to experience feelings above and beyond what we thought possible.
Make a list of everything that gives you joy. Whenever you have free time, pick something off the list and do it!
Diet and Exercise
The body and brain are inextricably linked. When the body feels good, the brain often feels good. Eating right can change your life. Getting out and about will also improve your mental health.
Here’s what doctors suggest for diet:
- The Dash Diet
- Mediterranean Diet
- Volumetric Diet
- Flexitarian Diet
- Mayo Clinic Diet
- MIND Diet
Always consult with your physician before embarking on a new eating regimen.
For exercise, there’s one simple rule: do something you enjoy. Here are a few suggestions to make your movement as pleasurable as possible:
- Adventure sports – Hiking, biking, kayaking, rock climbing, skiing, skateboarding, skydiving, basically anything that takes you somewhere new.
- Play games – Football, baseball, hockey, tennis, ultimate, skating, soccer, or even croquet.
- Active Hobbies – Gardening, sailing, fishing, animal keeping, paintball, swimming, martial arts, golf, horseback riding, go-karting, ping pong or attend festivals and outdoor gatherings.
Creating something provides a sense of control. This gives us an outlet for our feelings. Here’s a few places to start:
- Performance – Singing, dancing, acting, playing an instrument or doing physical stunts.
- Writing – Poetry, stories, information, a blog, a journal or a song.
- Recording – Videos, podcasts or photographs are all excellent types of recording media to explore.
- Make something – Build a machine, sew some clothes, craft some furniture or fix something broken.
By practicing with these tools, you can stay sober and live a happier, more satisfying life!