Recovering from an addiction is a long and difficult road. The more support you have during your journey, the more likely you are to succeed.
In this article, we’re taking a look at why it’s important to surround yourself with supportive friends, family, and professionals who offer 24-hour support.
Let’s get started.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, up to 60% of people who are in recovery from addiction relapse within a year.
Relapse can happen for many different reasons, very personal reasons. Each person in recovery has a list of triggers that make it hard to stay sober. They leave treatment with a list of relapse prevention tips for each trigger. However, implementing these tips can be difficult for those returning straight back into their old lifestyles.
Not many addicts have the option to leave rehab and start a new life in a location. This means many must return home to the place where they are constantly reminded of when, where and with whom they got high.
Triggers can include stress, not being able to find employment, physical or emotional pain, and running into people who are still using. Even those in recovery who do everything right still struggle to stay sober.
Let’s face it, it is hard to fight your own brain that is giving you all kinds of excuses to relapse. Addiction is a brain disorder and that extends into recovery. It can take the brain years to completely heal from the trauma of addiction.
Thoughts of relapsing don’t just happen during the night or during the day. They can be constant. Therefore, we need to find ways to equip recovering addicts with the tools to fight relapse 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Sober living is a great place to start.
Keep reading to find out how sober living offers support around the clock for recovering addicts.
No Office Hours
This first advantage of sober living may seem obvious, but it is worth further explanation. As implied before, triggers for relapse don’t just happen between the hours of 8 am to 5 pm, which are office hours for most outpatient treatment centers.
Sober living offers help at any hour of the day, and in non-traditional ways, like the ones below.
Strength in Numbers
Support from one person is great. Support from a group of people is even better, especially when they know exactly what you are going through and can relate to all your ups and downs in trying to stay sober.
Having access to peers teaches those in recovery how to ask for support, something they will need to know when they return home. It gives them practice in communicating their needs, receiving help, and working with others to overcome obstacles.
This can also help you feel like you belong to a group or community.
A community in recovery refers to the people who fill your life to help you overcome your struggles. In sober living, your community includes peers who are willing to be there for you when you are having a hard time coping with sobriety, any time of the day or night.
Since you are a part of this community, you can give support to your peers. Having a community like sober living gives you the desire to succeed because you don’t want to let your peers down. It gives you hope that you can succeed because you see others succeeding. It makes you accountable.
Practice Receiving Help
During your addiction, you received the wrong kind of help. You filled your life with enablers who could help you continue getting high. You may not know how to receive positive help yet. You may have even struggled to accept the help offered during treatment.
Sober living can help. It gives you the practice you need in receiving help so that when you return home, you will be able to choose the right type of help.
In sober living, you are also given the opportunity to give help to your peers.
Practice Giving Help
Helping someone else is rewarding and gives you a sense of purpose. Addiction is a selfish disease. Your brain makes it hard for you to think of anything other than getting high. One way to avoid relapse is to help others.
Sober living is the perfect environment to teach you how to help others and give back in some way. You can even take opportunities to volunteer in the community, giving back on a bigger level.
Sober living provides a safe environment around the clock. It is drug-free, with rules to support your sobriety. It is an environment in which you can practice conflict resolution, decision-making skills, time management, stress management and the many other coping skills you learned in treatment.
Sober living allows you to practice the skills you need to succeed before you need to implement them in your home environment. You get to practice attending meetings, completing chores, creating a schedule, and showing accountability by doing what you say you are going to do and showing up when expected.
Drug and alcohol testing is done to ensure no one is creating an unsafe space for others.
Continued Access to Treatment
While sober living encourages you to find support in your peers, there will be times when you need the assistance of mental health professionals.
Sober living residents are encouraged to meet with a therapist for mental health and addiction-related issues. In fact, treatment should continue even after you leave sober living and return home. While in sober living, you may want to meet with medical professionals, as well as addiction specialists.
Because your physical and mental health is directly connected, it’s important to have regular check-ups. This is probably something you did not do during your addiction, but something you can start while in sober living.
Treatment professionals can teach you tools and techniques to help you cope in times when you may not be able to access them directly.
This is the time to start being mindful of your body’s needs and seeking the right type of treatment to resolve any issues.
Sober living is just that, living your life as a sober person every day and night. It’s the practice you need to thrive in your recovery.
If you find it too difficult to overcome an addiction on your own, a sober living facility may just be the solution you need.
With 24-hour support and a community of both professionals and like-minded people interested in sober living, you can rest assured you’re in the best place you can be when you enter a sober living program.