Getting clean is a great accomplishment, and there’s a lot to celebrate. Finding a new way of life can be a huge relief for those who have been in the throes of addiction for a while. Staying clean, however, can be hard work. Many people in recovery talk about how they feel about “catching up” with the rest of the world – there’s so much to do! Whether it’s establishing new relationships or starting a new job, there is a lot of work involved. Many recovering addicts throw themselves into this new way of life with great enthusiasm – but it’s easy to get burned out. That’s why it’s so important for everyone to take the time to practice self-care.
A few minutes each day nurturing yourself is an integral part of embracing your new way of life, and it can help you prevent burnout. Self-care is sometimes a foreign concept to people in recovery. After all, you may have spent a lot of time being “selfish” or only caring about what you wanted (such as drugs). It’s important to realize that self-care has nothing to do with being selfish. Instead, it’s a way to take care of your own needs, if only for a few minutes. Self-care can help you ease the stress of life in recovery, allowing you to continue your hard work.
Self-Care Methods You Can Try Anytime:
- Mindfulness: Mindfulness helps you live in the present moment and is a form of mediation that enables you to relax. Try sitting outdoors in the open air, close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Pay attention to how your body feels and the sounds around you. Feel the warmth of the sun or the comfort of a warm breeze. There are many other variations of this exercise; try a few meditations for mindfulness on your own.
- Journaling: Many people find that journaling helps sift through their emotions and find solutions to problems. Not a writer? Try doodling your thoughts and feelings about the day, or even make a collage of your hopes and dreams by going through old magazines.
- Listen to music: Music is often called the gateway to the soul. What inspires or uplifts you? Choose music that puts you in a relaxed or calm state of mind, or energizes you.
- Exercise: A lot of people try to overdo it when it comes to exercise, which in turn can be stressful, mainly because it is tiring when you’re not used to it. Try going for a walk or just dancing to music in your room. (And make sure you dance like no one is watching!)
These are just a few things you can do to help yourself de-stress during an emotionally taxing day or help yourself remain centered. Many other things may help you care for yourself – as long as they don’t hurt you or anyone else, they can be beneficial.
Self-care methods will change as you move along in your recovery and discover new hobbies. The most important aspect of self-care is that it helps you feel better.
Don’t be too hard on yourself in early recovery! You can’t change everything overnight, and no one should expect you to. You’re on a path that will ultimately help you live a sober, serene life. Don’t let anyone steal that joy.
Are you looking for a safe, comfortable, supportive sober living home? Please give us a call at 760-216-2077. We are happy to answer any questions you have. Thanks!