So you’re in recovery but you’re miserable. You feel like you might relapse at any given moment. Check out what I think are 10 reasons why your recovery sucks and what you need to do to put yourself on the right track.
1. Your Obsessing–You have to stop thinking about drinking and what you think you are missing! You have to remind yourself “I’m not a drinker/drugger any longer; therefore, it makes no sense to be thinking about something you no longer do.
2. Lack Of Activities–You must structure your day so that you have activities to keep yourself busy. Schedule regular “me” time. Work out, listen to music, watch a favorite show, meditate. Having lots of activities will keep you participating in the here and now.
3. No Support Groups–Consider a 12 Step Program. Those who attend 12 Step Programs are much more likely to maintain their recovery. Also, those who participate in a 12 Step Program, and who get a Sponsor, have reported a much more enjoyable recovery, and are far more likely to remain recovered. Attending a local church and hooking up with one of their groups is also a great idea. Most organizations consider an attempt at recovery without a spiritual solution to be an attempt at failure. Finding a Higher Power, whatever that represents to you, will be critical to your success.
4. Too Many Stressors–Putting yourself in the way of stressors or triggers is going to stress you out. To the degree that you can, minimize the amount and duration of stressors and triggers in your life.
5. No Professional Treatment–If your insurance allows it, get outpatient therapy and help! Having a professional to talk with will definitely ease the burdens you experience while you are in your recovery.
6. Old Haunts–Stay away from the places you used to use in! It’s pretty much a given that you will be triggered to use trying to convince yourself that you can still hang out in the same old places when you were using.
7. Old Pals–This might require that you lose some of your old pals. Pals that you used to drink and or drug with are not going to be healthy to you in your recovery. It’s time to get some new friends!
8. Lack of Support–Not having family, co-workers, or friends support can be disheartening. If a loved one is still drinking, for example, it’s going to put a real crimp in your recovery ability. Try to talk with those closest to you about needing their empathy and, more importantly, their dedicated support.
9. Lack of Resources–Not attempting to find sober people, not participating in recovery work on a daily basis, and not providing yourself with literature–whether it be books, inspirational apps, online blogs/resources, etc–is a hindrance to your progress in recovery. Reading inspirational or educational literature is going to keep you mindful of your recovery as you read these kinds of materials.
10. Lack of Belief–Not believing in yourself, giving in to “stinking thinking,” constantly worrying about relapsing is not helping you. Go out and live your life as a person who no longer uses! Having an “Attitude of Gratitude” and believing in Acceptance, are two solid ways to live with belief daily.
Sometimes the best approach is to not give too much attention or emotion to recovery. Just try to live in the moment. Try not to bite off more than you can chew. Most importantly, reach out to someone–ANYONE–if you are feeling the urge to pick up.