What To Do if You Are Struggling in Recovery

Even if you have been in recovery for one month, one year, or ten years, there will be times you struggle with the healing process. This is okay, as it happens to every single person that has gone through recovery. However, you can do things to get back on track and bring yourself back to center in your recovery. You must keep in mind that recovery is all about progress, not perfection. Recovery looks different for everyone, but everyone in recovery does face obstacles along the way. When you come face to face with these obstacles, try these tips to get back on track.

Remind Yourself That It’s Okay

It is essential to accept that you are human and will struggle sometimes. Recovery is not an easy road by any means, and you will have to fight for your sobriety always. Just because you find yourself struggling, it does not mean you have failed. You are still worthy and deserving of recovery, and you will bounce back from this. Show compassion for yourself and reassure your internal voice with positive affirmations. This will help to remind you that you can still make progress and move forward from here. 

Remember That You Have the Strength to Stay Sober

It is important to remember that no one wakes up and decides to struggle with drug or alcohol abuse, let alone addiction. You were the one that decided enough is enough and sought treatment to give yourself a better life. Now that you have been sober for some time, you know that you have the strength to overcome even the worst of days. You have survived what you thought were bad days and are still standing strong. You will get through this bump in the road too.

Look at Each Day as a New Opportunity

Every day when you wake up, you have the chance to start over. You can change your life in the span of a second if you want to. Approach every day as a new opportunity just waiting for you to grab hold of it. Just because you had a bad day today doesn’t mean that tomorrow has to be bad too. Seeing each day as a new opportunity to be better is a great way to restore hope for a better future. Don’t get caught up in the negativity that some days may bring. Find the positive and keep moving forward.

Go Back to a Structured Routine

When you fall off track in recovery, it may be because you were not sticking to a daily routine that pushes you forward in your recovery. So many treatment centers have a daily schedule for their clients because it keeps you busy and motivated in your recovery. Having free time is a common relapse trigger. You may begin to dwell on your negative thoughts and act out to relieve those feelings. If you have a schedule that includes recovery activities and aids, you are bound to keep progressing in your recovery. Sit down and create a schedule conducive to your recovery and do your best to stick to it. You will notice the changes quickly and be back on track in no time.

Go Over Your Coping Skills

There are numerous coping methods that people use to deal with bad days in recovery. It is normal as you grow in your recovery journey for specific strategies not to work anymore. Go over your list of regular coping strategies and see if any don’t seem to be working or if there are some you forgot about. If you need new methods, try some of these:

  • Exercise
  • Meditate
  • Reach out
  • Talk to your therapist
  • Distract yourself
  • Go to a support group
  • Volunteer
  • Go for a walk outside
  • Practice gratitude
  • Watch a documentary

Reach Out and Connect

It can be easy to isolate yourself when you are struggling, especially if you don’t want to admit it in the first place. However, isolation will only make your situation worse and serve as an even bigger reminder of your struggles. Instead, reach out to those you trust, and that support your recovery. This can be your therapist, your sponsor, a sober buddy, a close friend, or a family member. No matter who it is, make sure they are there to listen and be there for you even if they cannot offer any advice. Even the feeling of connection can be enough to motivate you through this tough time. Reach out and build those connections rather than isolate yourself.


Hitting roadblocks in your recovery are not uncommon, and it will happen at some point. When this happens, you need to remind yourself that you are human, and it does not mean you have failed just because you have stumbled. Everyone will have their hard days, but how you cope with them will define your story. No matter how bad things get, you can always start the day new and pick yourself back up to keep pushing forward. However, should you ever need further assistance, don’t be afraid to reach out. At Northstar Transitions, it is our goal to help our clients both in and after treatment. We know that recovery is a lifelong journey, and we are here to support you whenever you need a boost. If you or someone you know is struggling, give us a call today at (303) 558-6400. Together we can get you back on track and back to making progress in recovery.


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