Motivation for managing a substance use disorder requires persistence and resilience. When you incorporate your recovery regimen into your everyday life, eventually, the two become one and the same. However, while focusing on the things you can control and manage both your life and recovery, it does not mean that at certain points, life won’t throw you a curveball to challenge you. Such challenges can feel like a setback in early recovery. When this happens, you might return to old familiar feelings of doubt, hesitance, and uncertainty.
While you might have a newfound resilience in handling and overcoming particular challenges, it is impossible to prepare for all of the curve balls life will throw at you. It is essential never to stop practicing and building your skills. Doing so will promote continued growth and resilience. Let’s look at some ways you can continue to grow and strengthen your resilience in your life and recovery so you’ll be more prepared to handle obstacles that come your way.
Manage Impulses and Triggers
When you become reacquainted with your life after treatment, you might feel overwhelmed or unprotected from some triggers, impulses, and temptations to drink. There are likely certain people and places in your environment that could directly impact your desire to want to use. Therefore, it is crucial to create boundaries. Boundaries are the ideals and values you’ll set for yourself and others that you should never compromise.
Part of these boundaries could be detaching yourself from friends, family, and places that trigger you to use. Ending such relationships and avoiding certain areas will immediately put you in a better position to prevent certain stressors that temp you to use. While it may not be easy, choosing to love yourself and putting your needs first is a great way to reset your recovery compass should you stray off course.
To help reinforce your boundaries, you might use mindfulness or a journal to help maintain focus and motivation in recovery. Both mindfulness and journaling can make for quick and consistent practices to help you stay in the moment and realize that only you can control your behaviors, leading to a sense of liberation when faced with a challenge. Additionally, making journaling a habit helps you continue to recognize your progress and that no drink can ever live up to the success you have made in recovery.
Talk About Your Challenges
When you shift your focus on building a supportive network of peers, friends, and family that put your needs first, you find reassurance that there will always be someone you can reach out to for help. The more you build trust within yourself and relationships, the more you will be able to express yourself when feeling overwhelmed by challenges. Having this release to admit that you are experiencing fear and doubt is the first step to keeping such challenges at bay.
Remember, your peers are like teammates, and as a team, you are a community of people that are all working toward the ultimate success of maintaining sobriety. Attending support groups and meetings is another great way to help keep your challenges in check. Not only will you bond through shared experiences, but you can become a pillar of support for another peer in need, and this kind of connection with others can help you thrive in the face of adversity.
Take It One Step At a Time
Certainly, you have heard the “one day at a time” analogy, but what does it mean, and how does it apply to you? Taking it one step at a time means taking each moment of every day as it comes along, and then working to get through it. Try not to dwell on what has already come and gone, and try not to overwhelm yourself with imagined scenarios of what may or may not happen.
If you make a mistake, there is always time in the day to learn from it and move forward. Be mindful of the waves of intense feelings you might have, and try to stay aware and ride them out. Living life in the present and taking things as they come helps you understand that challenges don’t last forever and that you can overcome them.
Physical activity is excellent for your mind, body, and spirit. In fact, regular exercise helps produce feel-good hormones such as dopamine within the brain which helps reduce stress, tension, and leave you with an overall feeling of happiness. Taking just thirty minutes a day can become a great outlet to process frustration, combat depression, and even be social. Regular exercise can also leave you with a sense of accomplishment, which builds self-resilience and confidence. Exercise can also include a variety of activities such as:
- Weight training
Taking some time each week to exercise will help you handle life’s curveballs one day at a time.
Life is unpredictable, which is why it is exciting, fulfilling, and unfortunately challenging. Sometimes life will throw you a curveball you might not be ready for. At Choice House, we focus on the needs of men to help them attain the resilience and resources to handle the challenges that come with everyday life. Our male-focused treatments help our patients become better at communicating their needs to their loved ones and professionals alike. Our programs, such as Outdoor Adventure Therapy, have been especially successful in helping men craft tools necessary to handle real-world scenarios in an organic and fulfilling way. Therefore, if you or a loved one is in need of treatment, then the time to get help is now. With 24/7 admissions, there is never a wrong time to reach out. To learn more about handling life’s challenges and maintaining a long, lasting recovery, call us today at (720) 577-4422.