When it comes to addiction recovery, learning to live sober can be a difficult thing. Luckily, with the help of aftercare and alumni programs as well as sober living houses, clients can take from those who have been through the process before and see the bright side of things as quickly as possible.
Learning to Live Sober: Benefits of Sobriety
Sobriety can be life-changing. Through feedback we get from former clients, we hear over and over that their new, sober life is the greatest life our clients have ever known. If you are currently struggling with drug or alcohol abuse, however, sober living may not seem like greener grass on the other side. It may not look like that light at the end of the tunnel. Rather, it may look boring. It may feel scary. It may be intimidating. How will you live a life without substances by your side? Will you be able to establish relationships? What will you do for fun, and be happy without your blanket of booze, and blunts,? There is no doubt that sobriety is a challenging goal, but the incredible benefits that come alongside it are unquestionably worth the effort. The better benefits of sobriety far outweigh the challenges, and more significantly, far outweigh your old days of drinking and getting high. And we’re not just talking no more hangovers or embarrassing drunk texts. We’re talking about the lasting, meaningful, life-changing benefits of sobriety. Here are just a few:
1. When You Achieve Sobriety, You Will Look & Feel Healthier.
Perhaps one of the most profound benefits of sobriety is the physiological difference you will feel without drugs or alcohol in your system. You’ll sleep more soundly, allowing the body to fully recharge and heal. Also, be prepared to discover newfound energy and motivation, putting it towards exercise and healthy habits. Soon, you will regain your appetite and desire to prepare balanced meals. Your skin, hair, and eyes will also clear and renew. And with these benefits comes an invaluable boost in self-esteem and confidence. You will notice the difference, and others will too. Fact is, drug abuse takes a significant toll on the body. Opiate abuse and addiction, for example, can lead to malnutrition and stimulants can lead to unhealthy weight loss. By the same token, alcoholism can lead to anemia and liver disease. Not to mention, addiction can also lead to depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders, which often impair the mental and physical well-being of a user. But these are just the long-term effects. On the regular, substance abuse can lead to hangovers, excruciating withdrawal symptoms, and a weakened immune system. It can also dehydrate and deprive the body of essential vitamins and antioxidants. A healthy, sober lifestyle encourages positivity in our minds. With newborn energy and confidence, long-term recovery becomes even more obtainable. Lasting relationships enter arm’s reach. Healthy living habits become routine, providing constant alternatives to drugs and ultimately preventing relapse.
2. You’ll Have More Money in Your Pocket.
Drug and alcohol abuse, as you know, is expensive. Alcohol costs money, prescription pills cost money, drugs, in general, cost money. Especially when you build up a tolerance to drugs (increasing your dosage and continuously needing more of them). All those dollars add up. When battling an addiction, you tend to focus your energy working to acquire your substance of choice. In turn, you put less time and focus into your career and saving for the future. One of the most notable benefits of sobriety is that you regain that desire and ability to put money away. You also regain that desire and ability to work hard and be accountable at your job. The best part is, you feel like the work you do is more meaningful than before; you no longer have to work for the drugs but instead work for yourself and your family. When you’re sober, can work towards a life. The new you can pay your rent, buy actual groceries, and still have fun money to go see a movie or grab coffee with friends. This is another one of the better benefits of sobriety.
3. Without Substances, All of Your Relationships Will Improve.
More than likely, some of your relationships with friends and family members were damaged by your addiction. Addiction often has that effect, whether you were cut off from loved ones who tried to help or you yourself pushed loved ones away in the name of drugs. It is not surprising, then, why repairing and rebuilding damaged relationships continues to be one of the strongest motivators for those in recovery. This may also be the case for you. By getting sober, you will find opportunities to reopen closed doors and restore bridges that have been broken over recent years. In addition, you may find that those reinstated relationships, without any influence of drugs or alcohol, are better than ever before. Sobriety tends to improve interactions and connections with others. This is another one of the better benefits of sobriety. Without drugs or alcohol, you can approach relationships with a clear mind and a healthy understanding of others – their feelings, expectations, and even social cues. In time, you will also open the gates to more genuine, meaningful, and long-term connections with the important people in your life.
4. You Will Make New Friends and End Relationships With Toxic Friends.
Part of the cleansing of toxins from your body includes letting go of toxic friends and unhealthy habits or personality traits. The removal of all forms of anxiety from your life is a giant leap. On top of restoring relationships with old friends and family, sobriety will also provide you plenty of opportunities to make new friends. Whether you are in residential addiction treatment or outpatient rehab, whether you participate in 12-step meetings or support groups, even if you are just at the gym or playing in a sober sports league, you will find yourself surrounded by others who choose not to drink or use drugs. Sober relationships will be a key factor in your recovery journey. They will show you that you do not need to drink to socialize and you do not need to be intoxicated to have fun. Not to mention, it is these sober friends that will also be some of your most accountable ones. These are the people who show up for parties, and events. These same people will answer you when you call; the people that will support you when you are having a hard day. Among the many benefits of sobriety is the fact that you will have friends you can count on when you’re stressed.
5. You Will Truly Start to Live a Fuller Life.
Of the many benefits of sobriety, perhaps the most momentous and priceless one is this: you can build a meaningful life while living sober, a life full of great memories, experiences, and utmost potential. Sobriety allows you to access your life and take advantage of all it has to offer. Drugs create distance between a user and his or her life. If you are reading, you likely know this firsthand. You may have had things or people in your life to make you happy, but in your using days, darkness constantly overpowered that potential for joy. Perhaps you felt that you could not access the happiness you desired. Maybe you were not satisfied. Or maybe your drinking or drug use was an effort to feel something. And perhaps all of that didn’t help, because more often than not, it just pushed you farther away from those that were closest. Your days of using may have become hazy, as you struggled to remember the better times and blacked out the times that were worse. By losing these memories, you may have also lost sight of family and friends. Sober living allows you to regain the positive aspects of your life, to access and experience them wholeheartedly. Without drugs or alcohol, you will begin to understand feelings of appreciation, love, support, joy, connection. In this new life, you will create moments with loved ones, remember them, and hold them close. You will shape a life that is worth living— a life that is mentally, psychologically, and physically positive. You will reap all the benefits of sobriety and more importantly, you will appreciate them. Of course, there are many more benefits of sobriety, including things like fewer legal troubles, the opportunity to build better credit, and new job opportunities. While these are great, the benefits of sobriety go beyond tangible reward – there’s a sense of accomplishment and achievement that can only be understood by those who have struggled through addiction.
Getting Sober at The District
If you or a loved one needs help with an addiction problem, The District Recovery Community can provide you with the expertise and evidence-based treatment you need to achieve sobriety. Through our addiction treatment programming and our partnerships with Orange County rehabs, our clients will get the tools and knowledge they need to conquer addiction and dedicate themselves to long-term sobriety. Call today to learn more about how we can help.