The early stages of addiction recovery can be uncomfortable confusing, and frightening. You might wish you could fast-forward to a simpler time. However, staying in the present is essential. Family-Centered Services recognizes that recovery is a challenging time, which is why we are dedicated to helping you each and every day of your recovery.
Staying in the Present: Prioritizing What You Care About
Recovery involves a tremendous amount of work. This work can be draining emotionally, mentally, and physically. It might feel like your whole life has become about your treatment and recovery. The treatment process requires a lot of effort because it will set you up for success in your life going forward. If addiction were easy to break free from, you would have left it behind long ago. For this reason, it is no surprise that so much of your day is taken up by activities concerning your progress in treatment.
Prioritize Rejuvenating Activities in Your Recovery
With that said, there is more to you than your addiction and there is more to your life than treatment. This is why it is important for you to stay engaged with the things you care about. Even as you work toward your recovery goals you should make time for enjoyable, rewarding, and rejuvenating things. If you enjoy engaging in active pursuits, incorporate running, swimming, hiking, biking, or playing a sport into your routine. Whether you enjoy artistic activities like painting or crafting or you feel refreshed by spending time in nature, you should seize the opportunity to experience joy where you can find it.
Spend Time With Loved Ones
Take the time to interact with your friends and family members. Make sure to spend time around people who are supportive of your recovery and who can hold you accountable while also celebrating the progress you have made so far. Connecting with the people you care about and who care about you can provide a necessary buffer against the loneliness and doubt that can creep up during recovery.
Putting effort into doing things you enjoy indirectly translates into effort toward your recovery. Think about when you put in extra hours at work. It can be increasingly difficult to approach each day with positivity when you start to feel worn down. Everyone needs a break, and this is no different when the work you are doing is connected to your recovery. Carving out time to engage in rewarding activities can give you more energy to engage with your recovery and sustain that pace.
Staying in the Present: Breaking Up Recovery Goals
When you are starting out in treatment, you might wonder how you are going to go from the position you are in now to the end goal of living a life free from substances. It probably feels daunting, and might even border on feeling impossible. In reality, recovery is a process rather than a specific destination to reach. This process is composed of many small steps, and viewing it in this manner can help it to feel less intimidating.
Rather than trying to work out every step of the way in the process, try to focus on where you are now and what is immediately before you. Set concrete and specific goals that fit into the overall fabric of your recovery. Working with a team of licensed mental health professionals can help you stay on track and navigate this process.
Acknowledge Small Victories
Focusing on those smaller goals is helped by acknowledging and celebrating the small victories along the way. You might see maintaining sobriety for a year as a currently unachievable goal but one you greatly want to reach. This can make it hard to see the importance of staying sober for one day. As insignificant as that short-term goal may feel, it is the stepping stone to reaching your long-term goal. After all, you cannot be sober for a year if you have not been sober for at least one day. Recognize these accomplishments because there is never an unimpressive achievement in recovery. Use this as motivation to work toward each new goal.
Staying in the Present: Learning to Accept the Past
If you are in recovery from drug or alcohol abuse, you have likely made mistakes in your life that you regret. There are most likely many days in your past you wish you could return to and change. The memories of painful things that have happened to you or the people you love can be hard to shake. These are all elements of your story and cannot be forgotten because they have contributed to the position you are in now. With that said, you do not need to condemn yourself to forever dwelling on your past.
If you are experiencing guilt, shame, or anger, use this to guide you away from the path you were on to a new, healthier one. In some situations, try to make amends with the people you have hurt. Be honest with your treatment team about any traumatic experiences you have endured so that you can begin healing. Most importantly, try to forgive and trust yourself. You may be ashamed of what has happened in the past, but the fact that you are pursuing treatment speaks to the attitude you have about your future.
Recognizing Your Ability to Handle the Future
When you have been trapped in the pattern of addiction for so long, it can be hard to imagine life without it. You might have doubts about your ability to keep up with treatment or sustain recovery after treatment. All those “what ifs” can quickly spiral and make it difficult for you to focus on the present. Choosing to enter treatment might have once felt impossible, yet here you are. You might not always be able to recognize your abilities, but working with the treatment team at Family-Centered Services can help you to continue doing what you once thought was impossible.
So much of our lives are focused on what is coming next or what we are leaving behind. It can be hard to stay rooted in the present moment and keep our attention from drifting away. This phenomenon is very prevalent in addiction recovery. If you are recovering from substance abuse, it might feel like your to-do list is never-ending and that there is no time to stay grounded in the here and now. Family-Centered Services recognizes how overwhelming this can become. We offer a comprehensive array of services to individuals and families to make the treatment process understandable, streamlined, and individualized. Call us at (509) 991-5822 today for more.