When you take your first steps on your addiction recovery journey, you may be surprised how much support you receive from loved ones, as well as from people you meet in your addiction facility. Soon, it will feel as if you’ve entered a whole new world, with a new schedule of activities, group therapy, 12-step meetings and counseling sessions.
Once you progress past the initial stages of recovery, however, you may discover yourself falling into a rut. As you settle into your first few years free of drugs and alcohol, you may feel you’ve run out of new things to experience. This is the exact time you should work on staying motivated in your recovery.
Look After Your Body, Mind and Spirit
As your you feel your initial wave of enthusiasm for recovery beginning to fade, experts suggest self-care may be beneficial. Science tells us investing time in yourself can improve your overall well-being dramatically. There are a variety of ways to accomplish this. Exercise boosts mood and may help distract you from cravings, while meditation can help banish negativity or self-destructive thoughts. If you wish to thrive in recovery, you should also try to remember the acronym HALT – prevent yourself from getting hungry, angry, lonely or tired.
Practice Gratitude and Self-Reflection
As you put the days of active addiction further and further behind you, the memories of what your life was like when you were using will begin to fade. While you shouldn’t allow yourself to think too fondly about your past, you should occasionally take time to look back and evaluate how much progress you’ve made.
Whenever your sobriety begins to feel too routine, think about the times you embarrassed yourself in public by showing up somewhere drunk or high, or remember all the days you woke up hungover, unable to remember what you said or did the night before. Reflect on how many good choices you’ve made, starting with your decision to get sober. Being honest with yourself about what you did in the past enables you to feel fully grateful for your future, which will help you stay motivated to continue actively working on your recovery for the rest of your life.
Write Yourself Notes
As you attend group therapy or 12-step sessions, you’ve probably noticed some consistent takeaways. Instead of letting these concepts and ideas go in one ear and immediately out the other, treat them as a learning experience. Taking notes at your meetings – and making time to journal about what you learned – can help you uncover unique insights into stories or aphorisms you’ve heard multiple times.
Shake It Up
Finally, if you’re starting to feel stuck attending the same meetings and talking to the same people every week, it might be time to change your routine to rediscover your motivation. Try getting help from a new therapist. Or, if you attend sobriety meetings, consider changing your scenery by finding ones in different parts of town or that meet at different times of day.
Rediscover Motivation in Lifelong Recovery
Though changing your life through an addiction recovery program can be challenging, you may find you face your most significant struggles after you return to the routine of your daily life. Don’t jeopardize your hard-won recovery by allowing yourself to become bored or complacent.
Vista Taos is here for you if you’re looking for ways to revitalize your time post-treatment. We offer extended care and a transitional living program that can help provide you with the additional support you need to protect your progress. If you’re looking to begin or refresh your recovery journey in a welcoming environment, contact us today.