What to Expect After an Addiction Recovery Program

by | Apr 14, 2017 | Blog, Los Angeles Alcohol Rehab, Los Angeles Drug Rehab

Controlling your addiction doesn’t end once you leave rehab. Here’s what to expect after leaving an addiction recovery program.

So you’re about to enter the last few days of your addiction recovery program. Congratulations! You’ve accomplished the first important step. While it’s worth celebrating your achievement, it’s essential to remind yourself that your addiction doesn’t end once you leave the rehab. In fact, what comes after requires just the same amount of effort and commitment as when you were in the program. This applies to all types of disorders: be it drug addiction, alcohol abuse or dual diagnosis. Anything could happen and it’s normal to feel anxious about your next chapter. It’s actually a good sign! This means that you’re taking your recovery seriously. You don’t want to throw all the hard work out of the window. The key is good preparation. Know what might be waiting for you at home and embrace the changes. Here’s what to expect after your addiction recovery program ends.

1. A New Schedule Awaits

If you’re used to following a schedule from the moment you wake up at dawn till the moment you retire to bed at night, returning home can be a shock. Your family members have different living styles. Don’t feel obligated to fit in right away. It’s critical to figure out a schedule that accommodates your recovery. At the same time, it should result in no hard feelings or misunderstanding with your family members. Talk to your family. Help them understand your situation so they can help you facilitate your recovery. Create a healthy routine and maintain it. This can involve a healthy diet, staying active, looking for a job, cleaning the house, and cooking dinners for your family.

2. Focus on Your Mental Health

It’s easy to fall into a common trap: you think that you are 100% recovered. Being overconfident is the first step to getting derailed. Next thing you know, you might have already engaged in behaviors that can potentially destroy all of your hard work. Keep in mind you’ve only just left an addiction recovery program so be careful and patient. Don’t let your pride get you off guard. The key to becoming a better version of yourself starts with a strong mindset. So use this time to focus on strengthening your mental health.

3. Rebuild Relationships

Many of your relationships might have deteriorated by the time you leave rehab. This makes sense: many addicts have cause harmed or hurt people around them, including their family members and friends. Post-rehab throws you back into a normal society, where you will inevitably have to face those broken relationships. What’s more, you will need to mend them or move on. Don’t get taken aback by these changes. This is your second chance. Seize it and rebuild relationships with your loved ones. You’ll realize many great things along the relationship-mending process, ones that you couldn’t recognize while in the grips of addiction. Again, be patient. Give people some time to heal. Expect to invest extra effort to repair the trust you broke while using.

4. Cope with Depression

Depression is a common symptom that usually occurs during the early stages of recovery. It can interfere with and compromise the effectiveness of your recovery. Bear in mind that these “blues” are perfectly normal. It happens to everyone. The key is to accept your feelings and learn the skills needed to mitigate those unhappy moments. Otherwise, if depression gets worse, potential relapse can happen and get the best of you.

Here are a few things you can do to effectively handle depression:

•Avoid isolating yourself-People care about you and want to help you. Don’t keep things for yourself especially when you’re feeling depressed.

•Stay active-Sitting or lying in bed all day won’t solve any problem. Involve yourself in some healthy activity no matter how small it seems.

•Write it down-Writing is one of the best meditation. Make this a daily habit. So much of what you write will help put things into perspective and enable you to better address your depression.

•Talk about it-Share your thoughts and feelings with your closest friends and family members. Don’t surround yourself with only sadness. Be around the people you love — this will make depression go away.

5. Prevent Relapse

No matter how flexible and open-minded you are, it’s hard to accommodate a major lifestyle change like sobriety, right away. The risk for relapse is incredibly high. Moments of weaknesses are bound to happen when least expected. The good news is you can prevent relapses with a combination of skills, activities, and community support. Here are some tips to avoid relapse.

•While maintaining a healthy diet and exercise regimen is crucial, avoid overworking yourself.

•Be honest. The moment little lies start creeping in and becoming a pattern in your behavior, watch out.

•Take ownership of your action. Avoid self-pity — this will only add up to depression.

•Set your expectations low, especially for things you have no control over. This way when something doesn’t go your own way, negative emotions won’t have room to discourage you and cloud your judgment.

6. Manage Your Free Time

After leaving the addiction recovery program, you’ll find yourself with a seemingly endless amount of time. How should you go about spending it? The answer is simple: do what makes you happy. There is an ocean of activities and hobbies for you to explore. You can go hiking, swimming, or dancing. You can learn to play a new instrument, take up a new hobby, speak a foreign language. Or you can give back to the world by volunteering and helping others.

Life After Addiction Recovery Program

Remaining sober after a rehab program is no easy task. But you can do it! Stay strong, find yourself a suitable treatment plan, expect the changes, and reach out to the people who love and care about you. Interested in learning more about our addiction recovery program and how it can help you start a new life? Contact us today.

Cassidy Cousens

Cassidy Cousens

Cassidy Cousens is the founder of 1 Method Center. He’s worked in behavioral health treatment for over 20 years. Cassidy specializes in the Integrated Model of Care and is widely viewed as an expert in behavioral health. To talk with Cassidy call 1-310-254-9479.