When it comes to drug and alcohol addiction recovery, incorporating a sober habit can greatly support your mental health as you navigate this challenging process. Embracing sober habits has proven to be a comforting element for many individuals undergoing addiction treatment, complementing their journey toward recovery. Additionally, the inclusion of a furry friend can provide further solace during this transformative process.

The benefits of pets in therapy can’t be overstated, as people tend to benefit from the added animal companionship. Even those who weren’t pet owners prior to addiction treatment find that having an animal companion by their side during their recovery journey can be extremely helpful.

Changing Tides believes strongly in the benefit of having animal companions to help you achieve the kind of happiness that contributes to a successful outcome. A powerful way to heal from the wounds that perpetuated the addiction is to have your pet with you on the recovery journey.

Changing Tides is a pet-friendly rehab in the Outer Banks!

Man playing fetch with his dog concept image for developing sober habit

What Happens After Rehab?!

This lies outside the five habits because it’s extremely important for your journey into supportive living and outpatient treatment programs – Community organizations and support groups are available with people eager to help after your recovery process. They offer support during addiction recovery.  What happens after recovery is equally as critical.

Changing Tides will recommend additional treatment options to help you manage stress, avoid relapse and stay on a positive path of healthy living. Aftercare planning is vital once you’ve completed an initial treatment program. You can find a support group and continue your alcohol rehab as you work toward developing a sober lifestyle, by asking your rehab center for the best options near you.  Changing Tides has partnerships with plenty of support groups outside our walls and we can ensure once you leave our home, we will find you the aftercare you need.

Our goal is to help individuals develop habits that lead to a healthier lifestyle that doesn’t include alcohol or drugs. If you or someone you care about needs support to achieve sobriety, contact us today at 252-715-3905 to speak to a recovery adviser.  Now to the awesome habits…

Are you implementing these 5 habits?

At Changing Tides, we will show you how to change you life with 5 tactics like this blog discusses, and so much more…

5 Sober Habits for a Life of Recovery and Wellness

1. Play to Your Strengths

One way to stay sober after completing an addiction treatment program is to play to your strengths, or use the natural abilities and skills you’ve learned during addiction treatment. After substance abuse, sober living requires using your strengths to make healthy choices to achieve your addiction recovery goals. However, you must first identify your strengths.

If you got up each day, went to work or school or handled other responsibilities during active addiction, you have determination. There may have been times you pushed through a situation when you felt like quitting. That determination is a strength that can help you work toward successful recovery. Determination involves recognizing that with continuous effort and focus on a goal, you can achieve it. Use that persistence to move forward in your addiction recovery.

Self-awareness is crucial in the journey toward recovery, especially when it comes to recognizing relapse warning signs. By cultivating self-awareness, individuals gain a deep understanding of how their behavior influences both themselves and their relationships. A heightened level of self-awareness enables one to be fully present and attuned to their actions, desires, and emotions, making it easier to identify and address potential relapse warning signs.

When you’re self-aware, you recognize that alcohol abuse is a problem, and you know what triggers you to drink. For example, if you enjoyed going to parties and drinking with friends in the past, you understand that a party with alcohol will tempt you to drink again. Self-awareness is a strength that can help you avoid those situations.

2. Find New Ways To Have Fun

If indulging in drinking has been your preferred form of entertainment, the recovery process presents an opportunity to explore positive events and embrace a healthier lifestyle. Rather than struggling with monotony, engaging in new hobbies can offer a constructive and pleasurable experience. To discover the diverse range of activities within your community, consider paying a visit to your local library or community college.

Group of people in a cooking class concept image for preventing mental relapse and physical relapse

Leisure and Recreational Activities

You might be surprised at what activities your local community offers. You may find a cooking class or healthy eating class to help you create a healthy diet and develop a healthy lifestyle and other healthy habits.

Learn to draw, paint or grow a small garden, or try your hand at woodworking. Participating in an exercise program is a healthy habit that can strengthen your body after years of drug addiction.  One benefit of taking a class for fun is meeting new people with similar interests and developing new friendships.

Do you wish you could travel? Plan a getaway with sober friends and enjoy some new scenery. If you live near the mountains or a beach, a day trip can help you enjoy sober living and give you a new perspective. Go hiking, have a picnic, soak up some sunshine and appreciate the natural beauty around you.

Located in the Outer Banks, there is plenty to do by our recovery center.  If you are in Charlotte for instance, The NASCAR Hall of Fame is a great place to spend time and learn about history of a great sport.  Or, if you are in the sprawling beach communities of Kitty Hawk, Virginia Beach or along the coast in the Caraliona’s, there are plenty of amenities offered.

Engaging yourself in different activities can provide you with valuable insights on how to enjoy sobriety to the fullest.

Volunteer Opportunities

Look for a place to volunteer. Almost every town has volunteer opportunities. Charities that serve children, homeless shelters and animal rescue groups need a helping hand. People who volunteer often feel happier because helping others is a fulfilling way of giving back.

We’re Here to Help

You don’t have to go through this alone. Know there are people who can help you recover from trauma.

3. Care for Your Mental Health

Mental health and addiction play hand-in-hand.  There are times you’ll be alone with your thoughts. However, being by yourself doesn’t have to mean being lonely. During quiet time, you can practice self-care or meditation or take a walk to promote a healthy mind and reduce stress.

Have you missed reading? Find some time each day to chill on your sofa with a good book, or go to a park, find a comfortable spot and enjoy the outdoors while diving into a new title. If you enjoy cooking, why not try a new recipe? Jigsaw puzzles, crossword puzzles and similar games can also help you wind down and relax, promoting good emotional health.

4. Form a Positive Social Circle

Reconnecting with family and friends is essential in helping you stay mentally healthy. Loved ones can usually sense when you may be struggling and headed for a substance use relapse.

Family and friends who were there to encourage you during your early recovery work and have been part of family therapy can help you as you journey toward staying sober. Avoid always being alone by accepting invitations to spend time with friends and family. Whether it’s watching a ball game or going out for dinner, positive friendships with sober people can benefit your mental health and help you maintain sobriety.

You can draw confidence and strength from family and friends who want to see you succeed. Allow them to help you. They can offer a listening ear and encouragement. You may have many friends, but those who want to see you succeed in recovery will have your back during tough times and offer stability.

People who understand your trials are the people you can call when you’re lonely or struggling and have the urge to take a drink. They can help you work through difficulties. True friends and support groups can motivate and strengthen you, but they’ll also hold you accountable and help you understand that you must take responsibility for your actions.

Protect Your Well-Being — Choose To Say “No”

It’s brave and responsible to say “no” to activities where there are temptations to drink. If friends invite you to watch a ball game at a local bar, you can respectfully turn down the invitation. You don’t owe them any explanations unless you want to share why it’s not a good idea.

5. Set Expectations

Expectations are the things you believe you can achieve during recovery. However, your expectations must be realistic. Becoming overwhelmed can increase stress levels and leave you feeling frustrated. The pressure to be successful is something most people deal with, and it can get in the way of long-term sobriety. Be kind to yourself, take your time and keep moving forward.

You may be excited about the sober life, rebuilding relationships and showing your loved ones you’ve changed. However, if they doubt you, don’t be alarmed. Give them time to get to know the person you are now. Focus on the things you can control, and keep working toward your sobriety goals. Change is recognizable, and eventually your loved ones will see it and be happy for you.

How Changing Tides Can Help

When you have a substance use disorder, expect bumps in the road to recovery. Your life may be going well, but you may still need to resolve financial or legal issues. Be patient and understand that problems develop over time. It takes patience to achieve long-term sobriety.

If you are ready to get on the road to recovery, our team at Changing Tides, the leading addiction treatment center in North Carolina, is here to help. Contact us today to see how we incorporate these steps into our recovery programs and if treatment is right for you.  Steps off the ocean, our Kitty Hawk recovery center is ideal if you have a pet, have insurance (such as: Aetna, Cigna, Beacon and more…) or are ready for ~5 star treatment that will be a life-changing experience.

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Our caring and compassionate staff can guide you all the way through the admissions process.