How Loneliness Can Undermine Your Sobriety

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One of the effects of substance abuse is that it affects the relationship you have with loved ones. You might lose people who no longer want to be around you if you continue using it. On the other hand, after recovery, you may not want to be around the people you used to abuse substances with. This is because it can compromise your recovery. Therefore, you may be left in the middle about who to turn to. It is necessary that you build and maintain relationships during this process to help with your recovery. Friendships can stem from recovery meetings, reconciling with loved ones, and expanding your social circle.

Loneliness and Being Alone

Wanting to be alone and being lonely are not the same thing. Some people are introverts, and so generally they enjoy spending in their own company. That does not make them lonely. If you like being alone and it does not compromise your sobriety, that is okay. The issue arises when being alone triggers you to want a drink to cope. Keep tabs on your emotions and when you feel any negative feelings stemming from being alone, take action. Besides that, here are some of the ways you can ensure loneliness does not undermine your sobriety.

Friends and Family

On recovery, during one of your counseling sessions, you will be taught how you can mend broken relationships. Even if your loved ones were not open about it, your substance abuse disorder probably affected them. This is a good time to rebuild that relationship and spend more time with them instead of being alone. Invite friends over for dinner dates, game nights, or go on trips. This is an integral part of your sobriety. Keep in mind that you may also have to end some relationships with the people you became friends with while using substances. While that does not mean they are bad people, if they are still drinking or using it, they can cause you to relapse.

Get a Pet

If you are not ready to be around people, in the beginning, get a pet. Pets are loyal companions and will help decrease the feelings of loneliness. Caring for another life is good for your mental health as it makes you find meaning in life. Also, your pet will not judge you but love you unconditionally. In addition, a pet like a dog is a great exercise buddy. You can also get plants if you do not like pets. Taking care of a garden can make you feel content and keep loneliness at bay.

Put Yourself Out There

When in recovery, you will find that you now have a lot of time on your hands for other activities. If you do not put this time to good use, it is easy to relapse. Use this time to expand your social circle by putting yourself out there. For instance, look for volunteering opportunities in your community, whether it is an animal shelter, a children’s home, or taking care of the environment. You will meet new people and build new connections, which helps eliminate loneliness.

Be Kind To Yourself

Substance-use disorder disrupts one’s life, and often one will feel lost. Be kind to yourself. Exercise regularly, get enough sleep and eat a balanced diet. If you relapse, that does not eliminate your progress. Sometimes people can fall back into old patterns. The important thing is to get the help you need. Click here: and learn the steps you can take to get back to your recovery journey.

When going through recovery, a support system will help you stay accountable and support. That is why it is essential to surround yourself with people who are building you to prevent a relapse.

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