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Learning How to Say No in Addiction Recovery

As someone in recovery from a substance misuse disorder, you will learn about the importance of setting boundaries early on. Boundaries help you create new rules for yourself and others, and allow you to define what behaviors you won’t accept. They are also a form of self-discipline – a quality you probably lost sight of during your active addiction. This month, put the “no” in “November” and learn why this small, but mighty, word can become a powerful tool in your recovery journey.

Is It Time to Say No?

We all bite off more than we can chew sometimes. When there’s too much on your plate, you can easily begin to get overwhelmed. If you feel your schedule is too packed with commitments to others that you can’t fit in breaks for self-care activities like reading, napping or meditating, it’s time to re-evaluate how much you take on, and consider whether there is anything you can pass off to someone else. For example, if you are overextended at work, can you delegate responsibilities to a trusted co-worker? If family responsibilities have started to feel excessive, ask your parents or siblings to babysit your kids for a few hours.

Don’t Feel Guilty About Saying No

Whenever you begin something new, it can feel awkward at first until it finally becomes a habit. Often, society conditions us that saying yes to every request is the polite thing to do, and that turning people down is selfish. However, you need to put your sobriety first, and that will require you to step outside your comfort zone sometimes. If someone asks you to take on a task you don’t have time for, or even something you’re unwilling to do for purely personal reasons, you should never feel bad or ashamed about telling them no. Practice makes perfect, so saying no will eventually begin to feel more and more natural as time goes on.

Saying No Represents an Investment in Your Recovery

On a subconscious level, you know what is best for you, even when you choose to ignore it. You may be overly critical of yourself and catch yourself engaging in self-talk, but through it all, you can discover fulfillment in recovery. When you begin to pursue a life full of compassion for yourself and learn to prioritize your needs, you can make healthier choices.

Practicing self-care, learning to say no and setting boundaries on how and what you choose to spend your valuable time on does not make you self-centered or uncaring. It means you are willing to invest not only in yourself, but to the progress you’ve made in sobriety and recovery.

You Can Make a Change

Substance abuse can make you feel powerless to create change for yourself. If you’re ready to take that power back, Vista Taos Renewal Center is here to support you along the way. We can help you rediscover who you are without addiction keeping you a prisoner. To learn how to begin your recovery at our accredited, family-owned treatment facility, reach out to us today.

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