Addiction Recovery for the Long-Term: Recovering, Maintaining, and Thriving

Addiction is a crippling condition that hinders you for the rest of your life. It can seem like the end of the world, where you just keep spiraling deeper. But, you can pull yourself up and break free of the cycle. Addiction doesn’t have to be the end. Recovery is possible for anyone, but everyone has a different journey.

Whether this is your first time stepping toward recovery or you’ve had a relapse, know that you can recover. Some ways will work better for others. The methods listed below have proven to help the majority, and they are methods that don’t require pharmaceutical medications. While medications can be helpful for many diseases–and addiction is a disease–there are alternative methods to support you on your recovery journey. The goal here isn’t just to discover the plan for you. It’s also to find strategies to continue on a healthy path in the long term.

Recovery Plans

First things first, recovery. This the big step. There are a lot of different plans that you could follow.

If you think that you can handle solo recovery, go for it. The biggest things with solo recovery are will power and lack of exposure. You need to make sure that no one brings alcohol (or substances) near you. You need to commit to quitting the substance for good. If you are at the early stages of addiction and happen to notice its symptoms, solo recovery could work. But, if you’re in deep, you need more.

A recovery house might be best for you if you have been struggling for a while. Places like Ascension House Sober Living combine workshops and self-reflection activities. These are meant to help you get back into life without substance dependence. Recovery doesn’t just mean getting back into life. It also means changing your mindset and lifestyle. Intensive programs might seem like a lot, but they are worth it.

After the Initial Recovery

Once you’ve recovered, it’s time to step back into life. This can be difficult if you’re coming from a treatment program. The program may have provided you with life habits and changes. Now, though, you’re on your own. It’s hard to follow through.

Here are some tips to make things easier. Prioritize your health. Put it first before going out, hanging out, or other potential situations that could make you relapse. Devote your life to a purpose. This doesn’t have to be a higher cause or something outside yourself. Just have a goal that helps you keep going sober.

Socializing after addiction is one of the hardest parts of recovery. The number one cause of relapse is going back to the same circles after treatment. Finding support from a community of people in recovery can help you stay on the path.

Thriving and Staying Strong

It’s been a few months, maybe a year. You’ve been sober. First, congratulate yourself. Then remember, you must stick with your good habits. Don’t fall back now that you’ve come so far.

Once you’ve been in recovery for awhile, a state of contentment might slip over you. You’ll be thinking you’ve gone through the initial recovery and kept yourself on your feet; now it’s time to relax. That’s when it could creep up on you.

This may be a time to attend an alumni meeting from your program. It’s never too late or shameful to seek help again in post-recovery. It’s also a good idea to journal your feelings from initial steps to post healing. That way, you can see what events or emotions trigger your desire for substances. If you know what makes you crave things, you can avoid them and start to lessen their impact on you.

The Takeaway

Addiction is a deep place to come out of, and it takes a long time to recover. Every step of the way, you are fighting and winning a battle against your inner demons. No matter if you have just come out of rehab or if it’s been multiple times, you can always come out strong.

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