4 Things to Do to Stay Sober After Rehab - Mandala Healing Center
Addiction is a lifelong condition that can’t be cured. However, with comprehensive treatment, the right education, and enough support, people can overcome addiction and live a healthy lifestyle of their choice.
A relapse happens when someone returns to substance use after a period of abstinence.
Even after going through an addiction treatment program, many people relapse. This is because addiction is a complex condition with many different roots and influences.
To avoid relapse and have the best chance at a full, lifelong recovery from addiction, you must find ways to care for yourself and stay engaged in the recovery process. The early days of recovery can be some of the most challenging. But with a bit of planning and preparation, you can have an excellent introduction to your new life in recovery and embrace a healthy, sober lifestyle.
Here are 4 important things to do after rehab to maintain your sobriety.
1. Make and Follow a Relapse Prevention Plan
It is essential to plan for common challenges to stay sober after rehab ends. Especially in the early days of recovery, it is crucial to be proactive about preventing relapse.
- Identify your triggers: A trigger is an event, person, date, situation, or other stimuli that can result in a strong urge to use substances. Certain times of the day, such as after work or in the evening, may be triggering for some. Understanding your triggers can help you prepare to avoid them or cope with them.
- Know who to call: Have at least one person who you can call when experiencing a triggering situation. This could be a supportive friend or family member, a sober coach or sponsor, or an addiction counselor.
- Be prepared to leave: You can’t avoid a trigger. Leaving a situation can help you feel more in control of your sobriety. If you can’t leave, take a break to check in with yourself and start to use the coping skills you learned in treatment.
Take some time to make your relapse prevention plan before leaving rehab or as soon as you leave. It is one of the most important things you can do to stay sober after rehab.
2. Increase Your Social Support
People in recovery may find that their social support has dwindled after completing rehab. It is essential to rebuild your social support to help you stay sober after rehab. Making new relationships can help you avoid boredom and help you find a new purpose in your life after rehab.
Some ideas for finding new friends in recovery are:
- Volunteer with an organization you support
- Take up a new hobby or nurture an old one
- Join your rehab center’s alumni network
- Participate in sober events like meetups, concerts, and social events
- Spend time with supportive friends and family members
- Connect with people online
Making new friends is a challenge for many people in all situations. Be patient and engage yourself in activities you love throughout the process.
Professional support from a counselor or sobriety coach can also be an important bridge between the structured environment of rehab and your daily life in recovery. Find an addiction counselor or other specialist who can provide essential, regular support.
3. Balance Activity and Rest
Some people may feel that they don’t know what to do after rehab, and others passionately pour themselves into a variety of new activities. It is important to find the right balance between activity and rest. Self-care, work, socialization, relaxation, and recovery-related activities should all have space on your calendar.
Resting and taking time for self-care and reflection are essential. Without slowing down, it can be easy to miss signs that your recovery is in jeopardy. Spend some time each day reflecting, journaling, or talking to a trusted friend or counselor. This may help you stay on track in sobriety.
4. Cut Ties With Old Friends
Some people feel very confident about their recovery process and may be tempted to spend time with old friends who may still be using drugs or drinking. Especially initially, your recovery may be fragile–even if you feel confident and committed to sobriety.
Cut ties with your old friends if they are still abusing drugs or alcohol. Remove their numbers from your phone, avoid going places you know they’ll be, and consider changing your phone number to make it harder for people to find you. These steps may feel drastic, but they will prevent triggers that could derail your rehab progress.
Learn More About How to Stay Sober After Rehab at the Mandala Healing Center
If you want more information about what to do after rehab or any of the supportive programs offered at the Mandala Healing Center, we would love to hear from you.
Recovery is a journey. If you are ready to take the first step, we will walk the rest of them with you. Don’t wait for the treatment you need. Reach out to our specialists today.