Life goes on even during intensive rehabilitation. It is important to build and maintain your normal life so you have something to return to after rehab. By paying attention to hobbies and activities beyond treatment, you’ll be able to return to a more normal and supportive life that will help with your sobriety. Remember, rehab is effective but you still need support outside of treatment.
Life around recovery
If you’re entering a non-residential or remote rehab programme, this is even more important. Living life beyond recovery is important, and the flexibility afforded by a non-residential programme means you’ll have time to fill when you aren’t in group or 1:1 sessions.
If you’re proactive about using this time, it’s a chance to build a balance between recovery and the rest of your life. Doing this will help to prepare you for the end of your programme; failing to do so will leave you with empty time that can draw you back towards addiction and the habits that sustained it before you entered rehab.
Audit your week
A great way to frame life around recovery is with an audit of your week. Think about what an average Monday to Sunday looks like, and plot down how each day generally proceeds. What times do you wake up, how do your meals look and when you have free time, how do you fill it?
These points typically come up in your rehab programme too, and it’s helpful to have a list of a standard week from which to plan and proceed from.
One of the key reasons having a plan of your typical week helps so much is in avoiding the triggers and stressors that lead us towards the spiral of abuse and addiction. For some, simply staying up later in the evening can begin a slide back that leads to substance misuse as schedules and structure go out the window.
By creating a list of what a normal week looks like, you can begin to tailor and improve this in a way that creates a routine that is conducive to abstinence and continuing your recovery from drug and alcohol addiction.
What you’ll invariably find at this point is a need to replace the areas and activities of your week that threaten your sobriety. This could be as simple as choosing to replace a weekend day spent in town with friends with exercise, such as joining a park run in your area.
The key here? Whenever you cut out an activity that can lead to addiction, it must be replaced with something positive. Just cutting out harmful activities leaves voids in your week, and these quickly are filled with harmful choices and decisions that can lead to relapse. If you want to learn more, visit our what is addiction page.
We’re here if you’d like to talk
It can be daunting to look at your average week and to think about how to change it for the better. If you’d like to have a chat with a member of the Help Me Stop team at no obligation, we’re more than happy to do so. You can ring us on 0208 191 8920 or use our contact form.