Learning to stay sober takes hard work and can definitely be challenging. That’s why being in a sober living community is essential.
In this article, we’ll describe the key benefits of living in this type of environment during recovery.
If you are ready to get sober and stay sober forever, you must do whatever it takes. Whatever it takes means spending as much time away from the people, places, and things that make you want to relapse on drugs or alcohol.
Sure, staying away from those you love is not easy. You will miss them. You may even miss important events. Taking several months or even a year to gain the strength and confidence you need to battle addiction is worth it. Likely your family will agree. They want you to succeed in recovery just as much as you do.
The best way to accomplish this is in a sober living community.
There are many benefits of sober living. A few of the benefits are discussed in more detail below.
Practice for Improvement
Practice is the time you spend implementing what you have learned. If you want to play on a football team, you must practice with the team first. If you’re going to be a high school teacher, you are required to practice teaching before you get a degree. If you want to fly airplanes, you must practice flying for hundreds of hours before you qualify for a license.
It is no different for those going into recovery. You need to practice living a sober life to be successful in staying sober. For years you have lived the addict life. Everything you have done has been focused on how to get and use drugs or alcohol.
Once you get sober, it can feel awkward and uncomfortable completing daily routines without being high. Everything from brushing your teeth, cooking meals, and interacting with others must now be done sober.
Sober living gives you the opportunities to practice living without the use of drugs or alcohol, proving that you can live in recovery.
Too often, relapses happen because someone is discharged from inpatient treatment before they are ready, and they return to the environment filled with triggers.
Before discharge from inpatient, your counselors will set you up with treatment in your hometown. However, the treatment is often not enough. You went from the strict environment of inpatient treatment to an unstructured lifestyle in which you are given treatment a few times a week.
Sober living homes provide constant support for your entire stay. Some days you may need to meet with counselors and attend support groups. Some days you may need peer support. Whatever your therapeutic needs to help you stay sober, you can obtain it while at a sober home.
Build Positive Relationships
Being able to recognize the difference between positive and negative relationships is one thing. Being able to build and foster positive connections and avoid the negative is something that takes time and work.
Positive relationships do not mean they are always happy. Instead, it means you learn how to appropriately handle the ups and downs with improved communication, decision-making, and anger management skills.
During your stay in a sober living community, you will interact with peers who are also learning to build relationships. Together, you can learn how to resolve problems and make decisions the right way. You can also learn to trust others, which may be something you have been struggling with for a long time. Finally, you get the opportunity to give and receive respect.
In a sober living home, you can also break off negative relationships with your peers’ support, making it less stressful. If you put it off, it will be lingering over your head, preventing you from entirely focusing on your recovery. Do the hard stuff while at sober living so your transition back home will be smoother.
You are new in your recovery. Some days it will be harder than others to stay sober. If you are in your old using environment, it will be easier to relapse. You know how to manipulate your friends and family members. When they finally realize you have relapsed, you are already deep into your addiction again.
This is especially true if your family and friends have not received treatment for their enabling and codependency issues.
When you are in a sober living community, you can be held accountable by peers and support staff about any recovery struggles, like cravings.
Further, you won’t be able to fool your peers and the staff if you do relapse. This is a good thing. It means that if you do relapse, they will know it right away and can help you return to a higher level of treatment immediately rather than allowing you to spend weeks in a relapse.
Get To Know Yourself
You’re sober, now what? That’s a question many people in recovery ask themselves when they leave treatment. And those who don’t have an answer to that question are more likely to relapse.
It would help if you had a plan for your future, short-term, and long-term. Without a plan, you will start to feel like you are just winging it, and unfortunately, negative influences like drug dealers see this as a weakness and an opening for them to help you relapse.
Setting goals is crucial to a successful recovery.
Staying in a sober home gives you the time to get to know yourself and set goals for your future. You can figure out your talents and how those can help you establish a career. Reaching career goals may require obtaining an education. While in sober living, you can map out the smaller goals to help you achieve the larger ones.
Millions of people beat addiction. They not only beat it, but they also become successful citizens, living their dream lives. You can be one of these millions.
Don’t just settle for the minimum amount of treatment, or what your insurance company will cover. Give yourself the gift of a sober living community. Stay as long as you can. Take advantage of the resources that will help you live the rest of your life in recovery.