After-rehab life comes with its challenges. When some people hear the word “addiction,” negative images form in their head because of the perceptions that people have about addicts. Unfortunately, many of these assumptions are based on some level of truth. For instance, addicts frequently sacrifice their relationships if that’s what it takes to get their next fix.
Moreover, it’s not uncommon for addicts whose substance abuse has put them into a state of financial ruin to begin resorting to criminal behaviors in order to obtain the money they need to get alcohol or drugs. In short, it’s a disease that makes people defy their own logic, destroying themselves and many of the people around them.
By comparison, the recovery process is much less widely known when it comes to public perceptions. Most people assume addicts go to rehab for a month or two, and unless they’re simply not putting enough effort into their recoveries they’ll come out of rehab sober and easily sustain their newfound sobriety. But there’s much more to it than that.
In fact, it’s often said that rehab is the easy part of the recovery process and, contrary to what one would think, the real effort begins after a person has returned home from rehab.
However, it’s after returning home that many addicts find themselves unsure of what to do next. As such, the following are several things that a person who’s just gotten out of rehab can try in an effort to make the transition back home smoother and more successful.
Find Opportunities to Volunteer
Volunteering our time and efforts to others simply feels good. It can be something small—cooking some food and dropping it off at the nearest homeless shelter—or something more substantial such as organizing an actual food drive.
People who are in the early after-rehab phases of recovery often are encouraged to volunteer their time because it helps them to think more about people outside of themselves rather than continuing to only be concerned with themselves. In short, it evokes a sense of empathy and the desire to want to help those in need, and the feelings that come with helping others can be a major asset to addiction recovery.
Start Your Own Weekly Group or Activity
Another great way to maintain newfound sobriety during the after-rehab transition is to develop new routines and regular activities. We human beings are creatures of habit, which means that we’re most comfortable when our day-to-day activities are routine; by comparison, uncertainty and unpredictability cause stress, which can lead to thoughts of substance abuse. Therefore, starting one’s own weekly or regular activities, especially group-related activities, would be highly beneficial. For instance, a person could start a weekly, sobriety-related book club.
Learn a New Skill or Trade
There’s no better way to kill time or distract oneself from harmful behaviors than by learning. Taking the time to learn something new—which can be something like learning how to make pottery, learning a new language, or learning about a topic in which you’ve always been interested—is a very productive use of one’s time that can easy help those who have just gotten out of rehab.
Set a Goal and Create a Plan for Achieving it
Setting and achieving goals is one of the most satisfying feelings there is. Another very productive way of staying focused and keeping out of trouble is to make plans for the near or even not-so-near future. Once a goal has been set, it can be broken down into increments that make the goal for achievable over time rather than all at once. But it’s not just about making goals achievable; breaking a goal down into steps and stretching it out over time makes it more of a focus rather than a footnote.
Grab a Book at the Library
Reading is another productive activity that’s great for passing the time. If you have a particular series or type of book that you enjoy reading, you could aim to finish the series by a certain amount of time or read a particular number of books. Alternately, visiting a local library puts a wide range of different books at arm’s length. After getting out of rehab, going to the library would be a great use of one’s time and an excellent way of staying focused on sustaining one’s sobriety.
Take Up a Hobby Like Painting, Sculpting or Photography
Much like learning a new skill, taking up some type of creative hobby gives a person a way of expressing thoughts and emotions, especially ones that many have found to be quite enjoyable. Those who have pursued forms of fine art often assert that the greatest benefit is to express or liberate things that one wouldn’t be able to or ready to talk about, making it a potential asset to the longevity of one’s recovery.
Give Yoga a Try
Out of all the holistic and alternative therapies that are used in addiction treatment programs, yoga is certainly the most well-known and has arguably the greatest following. In short, yoga is a low-intensity form of exercise that involves very slow, stretching and lunging types of movement. Additionally, there’s a mental and emotional aspect to yoga; people who practice yoga are encouraged to clear their minds and focus on the sensations and movements of their bodies. Therefore, it’s a great way for people who are early in recovery to remain focused on maintaining their sobriety.
We Can Help You Get Your After-Rehab Life Back
After-rehab transitions are tough, and because each person is different, there’s not a “right” or “wrong” way to overcome addiction. Similarly, treatments or types of programs that are effective for one person aren’t necessarily going to be effective for others, which is why it’s essential for each addict to find the forms of treatment that best addresses his or her unique needs. That’s where we come in.
If you or someone you love would like a free consultation with one of our recovery specialists, call Drug Treatment Center Finder at 1-855-619-8070. We’re available day or night, seven days a week, to match you or your loved one with the right treatment programs to begin the journey to a successful recovery.