When you complete a rehab program, you are sure to be filled with excitement, happiness, anxiety, and more for what is to come. You may be unsure what the next steps should be, and you may feel a little lost. This is completely normal for individuals that have just finished rehab. However, after rehab, the next steps will be vital for maintaining your sobriety as you transition back into daily life. Planning ahead and knowing what to expect can help you make the right decisions for your recovery. Here are some suggestions for what to do after rehab.
Consider a Sober Living Home
If you are wary of going straight into daily life following rehab, consider moving into a sober living home. These facilities are great because they offer a semi-structured supportive environment for those just out of rehab but not ready to enter the real world yet. They are great for practicing coping skills learned in rehab in real life, preparing residents for life after the sober living home. This is a great option if you are not ready to move back home following your rehab graduation.
Find a Support Group
To stay connected to other sober individuals and have constant resources and education near you, try finding a local support group for recovering addicts. 12-Step programs are extremely popular and helpful in the recovery space, but you can also join non-12-Step groups such as SMART, Secular Organizations for Sobriety, and more. Support groups are known to reduce long-term substance abuse and help those that have recovered from addiction to maintain their sobriety. You will also find fellowship as you connect with other like-minded people. Friendships that come out of support groups often last a lifetime.
Continue Going to Follow-Up Appointments
A common mistake many recovering addicts make early in recovery is getting overly confident and they stop attending their follow-up appointments. This often leads to relapse as these individuals get stressed or too overwhelmed and do not have the proper resources or skills. The important thing to remember is that addiction is chronic; therefore there is no cure. Ongoing work must be done to treat it if one is to remain sober, and follow-up appointments are a great way to keep at it. These sessions help recovering addicts cope with triggers, cope with family transitions, return back to work, strengthen their recovery skills, and set goals for their future in sobriety. This is why it is so important to keep attending them even after rehab ends.
Find Sober Friends
Whether your transition from life before rehab to life after rehab is successful or not can depend on the type of people you hang around. Once you have gotten clean, it is not recommended to go back to hanging out with people you use to consume drugs or alcohol with. Instead, you should find sober friends that you can engage in fun, sober activities with, and that will support you in your recovery. These friends will keep you on the right track in recovery and give you advice when needed. They won’t tempt you with drugs or alcohol, either. This is why having sober friends is so important in addiction recovery.
Create a Daily Routine
Studies show that having a set daily schedule in recovery can help maintain sobriety and prevent relapse. This is because your schedule will keep you involved in your own recovery through healthy meals, exercise, engaging in recovery activities like support groups, going to therapy, and more. Not having free time is a blessing because you don’t have time to sit with your own thoughts and overthink. This can lead to isolation, anxiety, and depression, which can cause you to relapse. By having a daily routine, you can continually progress in your recovery and see your progress.
You most likely took part in self-care activities in rehab, such as yoga, meditation, journaling, exercise, and more. These activities help you take care of your mental health by allowing you to relax and reflect on how you are feeling physically, mentally, and emotionally. Continuing to take part in these activities outside of rehab is crucially important as well. Take time to be part of sober activities that you enjoy that allow you to take a moment and breathe. Focus on the positive things and maintain a positive perspective in your recovery by looking after your mental health.
A great way to improve your personal life and give yourself a further sense of purpose is by giving back to others. This doesn’t necessarily have to be doing work in the addiction recovery community; it can be anything you feel passionate about and driven to do. You can volunteer at the senior center, serve people at church, offer tutoring for school children, or anything that draws you in. Giving back has been shown to improve moods, increase self-esteem, and give individuals a sense of purpose. All of this is crucial in recovery as it keeps you positive and allows you to see the difference you can make.
Clients at Northstar Transitions have often wondered what the next steps are after rehab. Luckily for them, we are here to help provide the proper resources, advice, and support for them to continue living sober lives once they leave our facility. We understand how daunting it can be to throw yourself back into daily life after rehab, so we work with our clients to come up with an aftercare plan to help them once they leave us. These aftercare plans often include medication, a list of coping strategies, relapse prevention techniques, identified triggers, and more. By sticking to this plan, transitioning into life after rehab should be easier and less intimidating. If you are struggling with knowing what your next steps are following your dehab departure, give us a call at (303) 558-6400. We would love to help you be successful in your newfound sober life!