Sobriety takes work. It’s not the easy choice. It may not even be the fun choice. But it’s the choice worth making to transform your life for the better. Whether you’re experiencing alcohol addiction, porn addiction, sexual addiction, or any other addiction that has taken control of your life, you can always start the journey to recovery.
Any addiction can control your health, relationships, and happiness. This January, take the first step to take back your life from the addiction that is controlling it now. You’ll soon recognize the benefits of a sober lifestyle.
Have you ever asked yourself, “Should I get sober?” If so, it might be time to do some self-evaluation.
- Your world is becoming smaller because of your addiction
- Your addiction causes you health complications
- Your “luck” has turned bad and are facing legal problem or relational problems
- Your behaviors while using have hurt or scared yourself or loved ones
- Life seems unmanageable
- You have made and broken promises to yourself or others to stop
- You have lied, misled, or manipulated others away from the truth of what you are using, how you are using it, and how often you are using.
Acknowledging your need for sobriety is a brave and important step. Denial is common in addiction, as it can be frightening to admit to yourself or your loved ones that you’ve lost control. Remember that you can always start, no matter what.
No one gets sober in a vacuum. Connection and community are essential parts to the recovery process. Confide in a trusted loved one about your challenges, and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Speak with a mental health professional who can help you understand addiction and how to recover. Find a treatment program that can address the root of your addiction and provide all-encompassing care.
Making the change to a sober life is challenging. When you’re overwhelmed by addiction, it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. You can feel trapped, frustrated, or like you’ve lost the motivation to move forward. In these dark times, it’s important to remember why you started your sobriety journey. So, what are the benefits of a sober lifestyle?
- Better Health. Addiction takes a toll on your body. It often takes priority over taking care of yourself, which can lead to malnourishment, chronic pain, or damage to your immune system. Additionally, substance or alcohol use can cause irreparable damage to your body. The sooner you can stop, the better for your physical and mental health.
- Save Money. As addiction worsens, your finances usually take a hit. As your tolerance increases, you often need more to satisfy your urges. This excess usually comes with a price. Addiction causes a great economic burden. Living sober means more financial freedom.
- Stronger Relationships. Addiction can quickly become the third wheel in relationships that no one invited. It can breed secrecy and distrust and harm your friends, family, and partner. With sobriety, you get a fresh start to repair those relationships and make amends.
- Increased Energy. Addiction can suck the life out of you. When you start your sober journey, you’ll be surprised to know how much energy you get back.
- Improved Memory. Brain fog is real. Addiction can sedate you and your cognitive functions, not to mention how much time you spend thinking about your next encounter with your substance of choice. Reclaim your brain and get your memory back.
- Restored Free Time. When you have free time, addiction tells you it belongs to it. Take back your time! Find a new hobby or activity you enjoy. Don’t let your time be stolen by something that isn’t worthwhile.
- Better Sleep. Addiction can cause physical ailments that disrupt your sleep. It can also cause anxiety or stress that keeps you up at night. Sobriety helps you sleep much more soundly.
- Improved Mental Health. Getting sober means uncovering and confronting the root cause of your addiction. Once you heal from that cause and stop your addictive behaviors, your mental health will flourish.
- Greater Self-Awareness. When you’ve experienced addiction and come out on the other side, you have a new perspective on life. Recovery teaches you about yourself. Take this time to get to know who you are beyond your addiction.
- Authentic Living. Many people experiencing addiction feel as though they are living a double life. You may feel shame or guilt surrounding your addiction and hide it from your loved ones. When you confront your addiction head-on and commit to living a sober life, you can live life freely as your authentic self without having to hide.
For many people, staying sober isn’t easy. It’s difficult to reach your goal when you feel like the world is falling apart around you. Relapse is a normal part of recovery, but you can help prevent it by following these tips:
- Identify Your Triggers. Recognize the people, places, or situations that tempt you to relapse and avoid them.
- Be Aware of Relapse Signs. Identify the thinking patterns or behaviors that can cause you to relapse. Have a plan of action if you find yourself starting down a familiar path.
- Monitor Any Withdrawal Symptoms. Withdrawals are a normal but difficult part of sobriety. Symptoms can include mood changes, irritability, difficulty sleeping, anxiety, headaches, and nausea. Talk to a mental health professional if your withdrawal symptoms become difficult to manage.
- Break Unhealthy Habits. Sobriety calls for lifestyle changes. It’s important to remove any habits that may cause you to relapse and replace them with healthy, productive habits.
- Create and Maintain Healthy Relationships. Surround yourself with people who will empower you on your sobriety journey. It may involve cutting out toxic people who could get you into trouble. Invest in people who make you happy and add positivity to your life.
- Find Support. You don’t have to do sobriety alone. Find a support group or community that encourages you and has your back at your highest and lowest.
- Prioritize Self-Care. It’s your time to focus on yourself and your well-being. Self-care can mean balanced eating, exercise, and getting good sleep. It can also involve focusing on mindfulness strategies, like meditation, yoga, or simply doing an activity you enjoy.
- Accept Past Mistakes. When experiencing addiction, you may do things you regret. You probably feel guilt or shame about your mistakes. Dwelling on these feelings can hold you back from recovery. Accept your mistakes, learn from them, and make amends.
- Celebrate Small Achievements. Acknowledge your milestones and celebrate your success, no matter how small. To stay motivated, it’s important to acknowledge every win and remind yourself why you started the journey to recovery.
Recovery isn’t easy, but your sobriety is possible. You may struggle with getting started, but there is always a new day to try again. Utilizing these strategies will aid you on your recovery journey and help you find success.
Help is always out there. At Begin Again Institute, we can offer the help and support you need to start your sobriety journey and find freedom from sexual addiction. Contact us today to rebuild your life and find healing.