How do you create a life that you love and that you can maintain?
Let's identify what those beginning strategies are.
All of those seem so blatantly obvious and that's why it's so important to learn those skills to get sober from substances. Keeping your sobriety is another story, am I right? There are some more advanced skills that you need to adopt if you want to manage them.
You see, for me, recovery management is, is all about sanity management. If you want to keep your sobriety or recovery long-term, you have to keep your head on straight. The reason why that's so important is that when you get yourself in an awful situation or you're upset when life throws you curveballs. These are the times that are likely to send you spiraling backward.
The first one on the list of advanced recovery skills is you have to learn to deal with problems and address them as they happen. We all tend to procrastinate or put off things or not deal with things at all that is uncomfortable or difficult, but we all know how that ends, right?
Like financial issues, not letting financial problems build up, addressing things, making the phone calls you need to make, having the conversation with the boss that you need to have.
When you don't deal with problems as they arise, the problem starts to multiply. Just because we want to avoid it and not deal with it in the short run, we aren't helping ourselves in the long run.
When it comes to your recovery, nothing's going to put you more at risk than if you let a bunch of problems build up and turn into a giant ugly monster.
Another advanced recovery skill is focusing on your integrity. Integrity is kind of like problem-solving. It means you do what you say you're going to do and live in congruence with your value system. When you're doing things that are inconsistent with your values, you're not being completely above board.
Focus on your integrity, focus on doing what you say you're going to do, and follow-through. Along with integrity, the next recovery skill is learning how to have healthy relationships. Maintaining those healthy relationships is essential. Nothing is more upsetting than when you have a conflict with someone important to you and you can hardly think about anything else.
Why do you want to stay sober? Another way to look at that is a really strong connection to meaning and purpose in your life. Understanding that you're out there to do something better and something bigger than waste your time, run around chasing substances, or some other kind of addictive behavior.
When you can stay connected to that, it keeps you motivated and energized, and it keeps you liking your life and feeling like you've got something important to do every day. These things for me, are extremely important for the maintenance of long-term recovery. If you can find some strong meaning and purpose in your life and stay connected to your why. You're going to keep your thinking at least mostly straight.