Contrary to popular belief, addiction recovery doesn’t end when you leave your treatment center. In fact, your recovery will be an ongoing journey that you’ll have to work on every day in order to maintain sobriety and a healthy life.
Unfortunately, there are some pitfalls that those in the early stages of recovery can sometimes fall into. By being aware of these pitfalls and challenges, you can avoid them and keep yourself on the straight and narrow.
Going Near Substances Too Soon
There may be a day when you can be in close proximity to a substance you were once addicted to, but that day will not be in the first few months of your recovery. By exposing yourself to drugs or alcohol so early in your recovery, you put yourself at risk of being tempted and potentially relapsing. It’s often best to steer clear of temptation unless you are confident you can resist using.
Spending Time with the Same Friends
If there is a group of friends whom you used drugs or alcohol with that could potentially allow (or even encourage) you to use again, you should not spend time with them during the early stages of your recovery – or potentially at all. In order to maintain your sobriety, you need to surround yourself only with those friends and family who will support you on your recovery journey.
Just like many of us can snack on unhealthy foods when we’re bored, if you find yourself sitting at home with nothing to do so early in your recovery, you may be tempted to drink or use drugs simply to entertain yourself. It’s important to keep yourself busy enough with healthy activities to prevent any temptation like this.
Loss of Family/Job
While this factor is often not in your control, if you do find yourself struggling to deal with the loss of your job or a loved one’s passing, you should work to surround yourself with loving support rather than turn to drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism.