Returning to life after rehabilitation can be the most thrilling feeling ever. All those battles you fought for during rehab transform into a magical reality. However, motivation and positivity can be replaced with depression and anxiety with any triggering activity.
Persistent negative thoughts of failure or, in other words, falling back for drugs again is a catastrophe that is entirely natural and can be treated in multiple ways.
“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius
Staying on the path of recovery is quite frustrating; you might miss those destructive alcoholic habits. However, during these times, your emotional support system must be stronger than ever. Your body might give you signals to surrender at least once, so it’s crucial to focus on the positives rather than bow in front of those destructive desires.
We’ve come with five ways to deal with the negativity post-rehab:
Set your Goal
Goal setting or aiming to achieve something is always good for everyone. Returning to life after rehab might make you feel upset about the mess from the past, but take those past mistakes as a lesson for life. Note down the points that you regret and never repeat them. Keep a strict check on yourself.
Set a target to accomplish something good, whatever it may be. Break this goal into interesting milestones and work towards them little by little so you won’t get bored or lose motivation.
However, you will always find a reason to escape, with external distractions there to make you feel weak. Get ready to cope with those distractions and take assistance from your social group, including friends, family, or an expert you can find at The Palm Beach Institute, a well-known establishment built to ensure long-term abstinence after rehab.
Alter your Living Patterns
Sometimes, the worst enemy on the way to recovery is your surroundings. If old streets might bring some awkward flashbacks, then try exploring some new routes. If your friends convince you to drink a little and consider it just a matter of fun, then replace them with some good mindful ones.
If your room makes you uncomfortable and takes your mind to dark times, try modifying the interior to give you calmer, relaxing, and positive vibes.
There will be times when it would get difficult to avoid triggering points, like attending a weekend party where everyone is enjoying alcohol. Try to hold onto yourself using these techniques:
- Hold a glass of fresh juice while people are enjoying their drinks
- Do not interact much with people who persuade you to join a drunk evening
- Make a genuine excuse to leave early
Plan a Healthier Lifestyle
Starting a healthier life is the most crucial step to take after rehab. Get out of your unhealthier and unhygienic routine that may cause panic attacks or physical setbacks. Make a healthy plan that encompasses both physical and mental aspects.
Try using a meal planner to track your nutrient intake. However, more essentials to add up to your healthy living list are:
- Getting enough sleep
- Meeting the early sunshine daily and taking deep breaths
- Making daily exercise or meditation a must
- Listening to your favorite motivator or reading a book
Remember, do not burden yourself in the name of a sober living. Treat yourself as a human being and not a robot; learn to forgive yourself if you missed something. Don’t rush towards positive change or motivation; it will eventually reach you when the time is right.
Follow-up on Sessions
There’s nothing to be ashamed of in revisiting your rehab center post-recovery. Schedule friendly meet-ups with your consultant and discuss your current living experiences with him. Take precautionary measures from your consultant to be taken in case of a relapse.
Believing in yourself is essential, but being overconfident can lead to a catastrophe, which is why engaging in post-rehab sessions are a must.
Discuss your fears with your therapist and highlight all the issues that prevent you from becoming a sober human. Ask your doctor to give a checklist to follow and then re-evaluate it to fill the gaps.
Believe, Relapse is Natural
Doubting your willpower, emotional stability, and the guilt of past habits can bring back the old dark times. Therefore, give yourself some space to breathe, don’t make things congested around you.
Let your fears storm away, as even if you have a relapse, it doesn’t mean you have failed as a person. If you have a relapse, it will be due to some minor unfilled gaps in your attempts. So, rather than blaming and bashing yourself, stand firm and bravely face the reality of partial setback.
Highlight suspicious habits and try to remold them into something creative. According to James Clear, it only takes 21 days to form a new habit, after which it automates.
Although passing through the rehab process is one of the most challenging times you’ll ever experience, but once you pass through it, try not to go down that dark path again. Focus on your strengths and have a firm belief in yourself.
Turn to your family and friends, and you’ll realize how eagerly they are ready to welcome you. Keep a strict eye on self-evaluation and question yourself.
- Am I doing what I am supposed to do?
- Am I on the right track to life?
If your answer is yes, then keep going and keep growing. But if it is a No, consult your therapist to ensure a long-term sober lifestyle. Remember, thoughts are the most significant source of changing your life, and you can do it if you want to.