After completing a stay at a rehabilitation facility or other form of treatment, you have finally found sobriety. While the path to sobriety was likely arduous, the path to remaining sober will require the same effort and dedication. Fortunately, remaining sober is possible. The below five ways to maintain a sober life will help you protect the sobriety you have earned.
Five Ways to Stay Sober
According to the Mayo Clinic, establishing strategies and resources when beginning a new sober life is key to maintaining it. The below five techniques will help you stay on the right track:
- Pursue Interests and Hobbies – Are there any interests that took a back seat to drug or alcohol use? Is there any hobby that has always seemed interesting that you have yet to pursue? Now is an excellent time to pursue new interests and hobbies that will allow you to achieve lasting sobriety. Any healthy hobby can help fill in your new found free time, avoiding the urge and opportunity to drink. Additionally, as you continue to spend time with a new interest, your life will find a new level of depth that will make remaining sober easier.
- Focus on the Positives – Rethinking Drinking, a publication from the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Addiction, states that focusing on the positive benefits of sobriety can go a long way in retaining it. As you live your new sober life, continually focus on your improved health, increased energy and healthier relationships. You can even focus on the financial savings that come with not purchasing drugs or alcohol.
- Attend Support Groups – The Mayo Clinic found that former addicts greatly benefit from support groups. A support group is a collection of individuals with a common struggle and is typically proctored by a specialist or therapist. Being surrounded by people who have gone through similar things, and are struggling with similar urges, can help provide support when it is most needed. Support groups also provide a sense of community and belonging, which can enhance your quality of life in profound ways.
- Take Care of Yourself – Being hungry, tired or angry can often lead to the desire to drink. Prevent this common pitfall by keeping yourself well fed and well rested. Pursue physical exercise and a proper diet to ensure you are in supreme physical condition. Remaining healthy can stave off feelings of depression and anger, further assisting your sobriety.
- Have a Relapse Prevention Plan – You may have created a relapse prevention plan during rehab or as part of a support group – use it! If you did not create one, develop a plan now that will prepare you for various situations that may lead to a relapse. Take time to consider your history with using and examine how future use can be prevented. Additionally, if you do relapse, do not fall into full-blown use.
A relapse does not indicate failure; instead it indicates that your approach to sober living needs to be adjusted. Seek help immediately after a relapse to find sobriety. If needed, a short stay in a treatment center for drugs will help prevent more serious issues.
You Can Remain Sober
You’ve worked hard to find sobriety. Use your same diligence to remain sober. Use a combination, or all, of the above strategies to help find lasting sobriety. Remaining sober helps keep you healthy, happy and alive.