Just like any major goal in life, if you want to achieve it, you’ve got to have a plan – a course of action. For instance, to grow a company, you have to have a business plan. To write a book or an article, you need to have an outline. And even to drive your car from one place to another, you’ve got to know where you’re headed. The same applies with recovery. If you want to stay sober, it’s best to have an addiction recovery plan as well as a plan for creating a new way of life – without alcohol and drugs.
One way to begin is to imagine the life that you want. You’ve obviously gotten sober because you want to change your life. Perhaps you’re unhappy, depressed, lost, confused, or physically unwell. Whatever the reason for sobriety, you can start recovery by imagining the kind of life you’d like to have. As you consider your life ahead, be sure to keep the following aspects of your life in mind:
- Physical health – Would you like to be free of illnesses or reach your optimal health?
- Emotional health – Would you like to have emotional stability versus swinging from mood to mood?
- Social health – Would you like to feel comfortable and completely yourself when around others? Would you like to have a network of friends that support you?
- Mental health – Would you like to be free of any mental illnesses? Would like to have mental clarity, happiness, and overall sense of satisfaction in life?
- Spiritual health – Would you like to feel spiritually connected to a higher being?
These are areas of life to consider in order to begin daydreaming about the life you want. Many recovering addicts believe they know where they’re going. They are simply aiming for sobriety. And that in and of itself is a wonderful goal to have. It’s just the right direction to be aiming your sails. In early recovery, it’s important to remember you choose the scenery, the company you keep, and how fast you want to go in recovery. You have a say in much of your recovery.
In fact, there is much more than sobriety to consider. There are facets of life that can either contribute to sobriety or work against it. For instance, when you think about your social health, are you currently spending time with friends who are sober? Or are you spending time with old friends who are still drinking. They might not drink around you, but they live the lifestyle that you’re trying to move away from. When you think about your mental health, are you avoiding symptoms of depression hoping they will go away as you recover? Seeing a mental health provider might be the best way to ensure your psychological well being.
Begin creating an addiction recovery plan by thinking of all aspects of your life. Then, create a step-by-step list of actions to take that will bring you closer to the life you want. Meanwhile, continue attending 12-step meetings, seeing your therapist, visiting your doctor, and all the other tasks you do to support your sobriety.