It would be nice if the decision to get and stay sober was all it took. One day, you’re an alcoholic, but the next day, it’s over, and you’re able to go on with your life. Unfortunately, sober living isn’t that simple. Sober living is a decision that you make one day at a time, sometimes even one situation at a time. As time passes, however, it will get easier to stay sober. Getting to that point isn’t easy, but there are some tips that can help.
1. Work with women who have been there.
Women’s sober living is different than men’s. Different circumstances likely caused your problem in the first place, and staying sober requires a different outlook. Surround yourself with other women who have been where you’ve been and who will walk with you through the process. A sober living facility and 12-step meetings are both great places to find a positive and supportive network of women who understand your struggle.
2. Seek out new ways to spend your time.
It’s surprising how many hours of your day used to revolve around your addiction. Women’s sober living isn’t just about staying away from the addictive substance; one of the hardest things to do is to fill those hours. Try seeking out a new hobby: writing, crafting, hiking, or anything else that will ensnare your mind and keep you thinking about the positive things in your life. Avoid any hobbies that you associate with your addiction in the beginning.
3. Find strategies that work for you.
Women’s sober living is not a one-size-fits-all experience. What works for someone else might not work for you. Some people find that they’re able to resume an essentially normal life and routine once they leave a treatment facility. Others find that they struggle with mundane things: using mouthwash that contains alcohol, taking cold medicine that has an alcohol base, even drinking nonalcoholic drinks when they’re out with friends. If those things tempt you to fall back into your addiction, it’s best to avoid them. On the other hand, if you can enjoy them safely, feel free! Your past addiction doesn’t have to control your life forever. It does, however, need to shape the choices you make in the future so that you’ll be better able to say on the right path.
4. Make a list.
Throughout your recovery, you’ve probably heard a lot about lists and about learning to focus on the things that really matter to you. Think about your family, your friends, your job—all the reasons why sobriety is important to you. Sometimes, simply focusing on those critical points can be enough to get you over a difficult hump.
5. Develop new coping skills.
Many people use substances as a way to cope with stresses or problems in their lives. With the crutch removed, you need a series of positive coping skills. Women’s sober living means being able to spend a hard day with your kids without a glass of wine that evening. It means going to visit your parents and coming home without pouring a cocktail. It means handling those hard, endless days at work, without stopping at a bar before you head for home. One of the most critical things you can do while you’re recovering is learning those coping strategies so that, when the hard days hit, you have the tools you need to overcome them.
If you’ve made the decision to get a new start in life but need help with the early stages of the process, contact us. We will provide a secure facility, where you don’t have access to your addictions while you get your life in order and learn to function normally again. Women’s sober living can be difficult and challenging, but the journey to reclaim your life is well worth the effort you’ll expend along the way.