A Guide to Early Sobriety

 In Life in Recovery

When you decide to live soberly is most likely when you will feel like life is continuously throwing you curve balls. The beginning months are a struggle, and you might find that you are second-guessing yourself.

Don’t panic; push away the urge to have a drink; it will fade away. Sobriety is a battle with your addictive tendencies, low self-esteem, and convenient life choices. You have the power to change your life narrative and start enjoying being you.

Below are suggestions that will help you early on the road to recovery.

1. Name it. Claim it!

One of the biggest hurdles in an addict’s life is that they are in denial over their substance abuse. A person has to recognize that they have an addiction. There is no shame in having the flu, and an addict must realize that addiction is an illness that is harming their life.

When the addict acknowledges they have a disease, they can start treating their predilections (taming the beast of alcohol, Opioids, etc.) Remember, addiction is a disease of the chemicals in your body. When the body is sick, you should do everything in your power to heal. When you claim the sickness, you remove the shameful clouds that keep it hidden and allow it to fester.

Signs of Substance Abuse, Addiction

An addict may need a little help to realize that there is a problem. As with every illness, some distinct diagnoses can show up.

  1. The substance is always on your mind. You are planning for the next drink, or you are thinking about how the last one went.
  2. You get into a panic when you imagine that you will not have access to alcohol (or drug) for even the shortest while.
  3. You feel powerless to control the amounts and frequency of taking more.
  4. Using the substance is affecting your life. You have trouble keeping up with work demands. Your relationships are suffering, and you are lucky if someone brave enough points it out to you.
  5. You have irrational mood swings, anxiety, and depressive tendencies.

2.Determine to Tame It Daily

The mind is very powerful and can accomplish anything you set it to do. You took away the shame of addiction when you claimed it as the problem. Are you willing to live without the mind-altering effects that come from the alcohol, or drugs? Are you determined to tame it?

Give a resounding, yes! Say it aloud, and say it proud so that you hear your voice affirming that you hold power to direct the course of your life. Try to live in the moment because worrying about the future may cause anxiety. Begin each day by telling yourself aloud that you tamed the beast.

3. Seek Help

There are many different types of help available, and you will need every bit of it. The road to living a sober life can be rough. Having a support system in place will provide the recovering addict with the appropriate help.

a. Professionals

Medical professionals are outstanding because they will give the right resources for treatment. They will introduce the addict to services that will help them hold it together. They will diagnose any disorders that may contribute to the abuse.

Most importantly, the experts will tailor the treatment for specific issues, resulting in the addict staying sober for longer.

b. Family

It can be challenging to have relatives giving their support to an addict. Family members do not always know about addiction and health issues. They have to learn and be willing to make the time to offer appropriate support.

c. Friends

Individuals usually start indulging in alcohol or drugs with the company they keep. These drinking friends are the ones that they must cut ties with early in the treatment. Be direct and have a conversation, tell them that you can’t be around them and other triggers.

Recovering addicts will need new friends who live sober and have different hobbies, like gardening, cycling, cooking, ballroom dancing, etc.

4. Getting the Right Treatment

Every treatment program has to suit the needs of the patient for it to work effectively. The goal the addict wants is firstly, to get off the substance, and secondly, manage to live soberly.

  1. Outpatient care: the diagnosis of the abuse is mild, and the patient comes in several hours each week.
  2. Inpatient care: the diagnosis says the abuse is severe. The patient requires hospitalization and medical intervention to flush their systems and begin managing the dependencies.
  3. Residential programs: used for people who require full monitoring while having some independence (for work, lessons, etc.)

5. Having the Right Therapy

Some individuals want to get sober but are not ready, nor willing to put in the effort. The right therapy will prevent relapse by developing support to motivate the addict. People who commit to getting sober have a better chance to survive challenges.

Withdrawal is one of the biggest hurdles to cross because it is overwhelming. The person is removing toxins from their brain and body. It can be uncomfortable and dangerous but is surmountable with the right support.

6. Aftercare and Long-Term Support

In this guide to early sober living, the eventual goal must be to manage to live a clean life. To do this, you have to shore up your defenses because you want to win all the skirmishes, as well as the war on addiction.

a. Conflict Resolution and Interpersonal Counseling

Not everyone is lucky to have a reliable group of friends and find that they are getting into conflicts. The therapy will equip them to resolve sticky situations, and, build new healthier social networks. When you socialize with good people, you find it easier to give up bad habits.

b. Family Therapy

The family that laughs together might live happily, forever. If clashes with relatives caused some of the addictive problems, the family therapy would help put it to rest. Besides, it will control the enabling and codependency behavior that people slip into unconsciously.

c. Support Groups

The assistance given by support groups increases the addict’s chances of staying sober and recovering from substance abuse. One of the motivating factors is their accountability to remaining sober.

Now that you are equipped to start right, free from abusing mind-altering substances, you must maintain a clean lifestyle.

  1. Immerse yourself in motivational programs and therapies and firm your determination.
  2. Join alumni programs and use their professionals, resources and networks.
  3. Participate in support groups so that you interact with others who do not judge you, and in fact, offer practical answers to your challenges.

Final Thoughts

Addiction is a chronic disease whose treatment for recovery should try to eliminate, or manage the triggers and reduce the chance for relapse. Sometimes it is easier to begin by solving simple, obvious facets of life (hunger, anger, loneliness, etc.) Once an addict is in a calm state, they can decide to get treatment for sober living.

The right support from the beginning will add resolve to living soberly. No addict should feel as if he or she is a failure because of a relapse. Disappointment is a part of ordinary life. Given the right skills sets to handle setbacks, every addict can get sober quickly and stay healthy enough to fight the urge for intoxication.

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