Drug Abuse Recovery
What does Drug Abuse Recovery look like? You may imagine yourself on a recovery path that is smooth, wide and straight. Or your path may be winding and narrow, with rocks and overgrowth blocking your progress.
Maybe your recovery isn’t a path at all, but a seemingly endless cycle of using and not using, a cyclical pattern of good periods of time followed by bad.
We ask this question because addiction recovery looks like the individual person, and no two people are alike. One person, through sheer will power and determination may be able to break the bonds of drug addiction, while another needs a multitude of services and nothing seems to work. Medical people might explain that contrast in terms of an alteration of brain chemistry by the drug, possibly connected directly to some clinical diagnosis of depression.
Others may deny completely that recovery has any medical component at all, that the recovering addict is one who has overcome the demons inside with no help from any therapist, counselor or physician.
If you accept, even for a moment, that Drug Abuse Recovery can be explained in terms of a cycle, most of this section will make sense to you. While there are those who bristle over the idea of people being “helpless” over addiction, experience seems to show that most people ARE helpless!
How to Have Fun in Early Sobriety
by Luke Pool
Find a new hobby.
In addition to numerous other things, active addiction often costs people their passions and interests. Largely because individuals suffering from addiction must constantly be thinking about and searching for the next fix, things like hobbies and interests are quickly cast aside, leaving only substance abuse as the driving force of their lives.
As you stabilize in recovery, there are many things you can do to have fun and enjoy yourself without putting your newfound sobriety at risk. A prime example is to find a new hobby. If you’re someone who’s creative or artistically inclined, you may consider taking up drawing, painting, photography, or knitting. Even something like collaging is a great point of entry to some of the more creative endeavors. Of course, there are plenty of other hobbies if you’re not the creative type. You might consider trying a sport like baseball, basketball, or hockey. Plus, sports are inherently social activities, so this is a great option if you want to develop a hobby in which you can involve other people and possibly make some new friends.
Make friends with other sober individuals.
Speaking of making friends, this is another key way to have fun in early recovery. As mentioned above, sustaining a substance abuse problem is an extremely lonely way of life. For many individuals with substance abuse problems, the only friends they have are other substance abusers, often leading these friendships to be very superficial and unfulfilling. For this reason, it would be a good idea to become involved in your local recovery community, allowing you the opportunity to make friends with individuals who are also sober and for whom recovery is an important part of everyday life. A great place to start would be to join a local support group, which often consists of prominent members of the local recovery community.
Do some volunteer work.
Due to how alcohol and drugs alter the brain, many individuals in the throes of active addiction make extremely poor choices that bring harm to others. In some cases, they lie to their loved ones and steal from them to sustain their substance abuse problems. As such, an extended period in active addiction often leads to prominent feelings of guilt and shame. Finding ways to volunteer and taking the time to give back to others can be enjoyable for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that it can feel like you’re making up for mistakes made in the past. Beyond that, volunteering on behalf of others instills a feeling of making a positive difference in others’ lives, and that’s always an enjoyable feeling. Depending on the type of volunteering, it can actually be quite fun, too, particularly when you make it a social activity by involving friends.Go on a trip.
Traveling can be extremely expensive, but if you have stable employment and the ability to save up your money, planning and going on trips is undoubtedly one of the most fun things a person can do at any point in time, whether in early recovery, late recovery, or not in recovery at all. Even if you’re just taking a weekend or day trip to your nearest beach, it can be enough rest and relaxation to “recharge your batteries”, so to speak. Plus, traveling means having the opportunity to explore new places and try new things, and this can be quite exhilarating. As with other recommendations on this list, travel can also be a social experience if you involve your friends; perhaps you could bring everyone together and hold a vote in which everyone gets to voice an opinion on the place to which the group will be traveling.Reconnect with old friends.
Last but certainly not least, reconnecting with friends is another way to enjoy oneself in early recovery. Many people lose touch with their friends while in active addiction, choosing instead to surround themselves with other substance abusers. As such, being in early recovery means having the opportunity to reconnect and rekindle relationships that used to be important parts of your life. You might even choose to have these returning friends become involved in some of the other activities recommended above.
Luke Pool is a grateful member of the Recovery community. He has found his purpose in life by helping those who suffer from the diseases of addiction. He uses blogging and social media to raise awareness about this epidemic, affecting every part of this country. Now working for Stodzy internet marketing, he is able to pursue his passion by informing as many people as possible about addiction. Originally from Austin, Texas he now lives in South Florida.