Happy New Year from the House of Courage team! We are grateful for the year that passed and excited for the year ahead. The New Year ushers in new hopes, new dreams and a new beginning. By marking the passing of time, the new year also brings about resolutions like getting healthier, exercising more, saving money and for some, getting sober.
If getting sober or maintaining your recovery is on your resolution list, let’s talk about creating an action plan. The truth is, sobriety is more than a resolution, it’s committing to a new, healthier way of life.
Creating an Action Plan
The biggest cause of failure when it comes to New Year resolutions is that people set their expectations too high. Instead of thinking in terms of broad level resolutions, creating an action plan that breaks down the steps to achieve your goals sets you up for success. By setting specific and realistic goals you can work towards, achieve, and most importantly sustain, you build the momentum to maintain your sobriety and your recovery.
An action plan breaks down your goal into achievable steps that are much easier to accomplish. The age-old recovery wisdom of taking things one day at a time is supremely relevant. Start with a goal for the day or the week, rather than thinking about a goal for the entire year. Looking at an entire year of goal setting can be daunting and can feel overwhelming. Whereas by breaking things down, you can accomplish steps that will amount to your long-term success.
Begin with setting short-term goals. When you add a bunch of days and weeks together, it adds up to a whole year of recovery and sobriety. By seeing yourself accomplish your mini-challenges, you also gain confidence which helps to reinforce the positive changes you are making in your life. It begins with specifying what it is you want to accomplish. For example, instead of saying you want to be sober throughout 2018, identify the small steps that will help you maintain your recovery, like:
Make New Friends
If the company you keep indulges in toxic behaviors that you are trying to quit, it’ll be easier for you to avoid these situations altogether. By making new friends that support your sobriety and surrounding yourself with people who make good decisions in their own lives, this positive energy and outlook can rub off. By setting a goal to keep an eye out for people who are healthy and have a positive influence in your life, you not only grow a support network that champions your recovery and sobriety but also, helps you maintain your addiction recovery for the long haul.
Go to Support Meetings
Making new friends can be hard, especially when you’re looking to find like-minded people who also are trying to maintain their sobriety. Fortunately, 12 step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous exist with several meetings every day in most cities. Finding a community where people have successfully maintained their sobriety and who truly understand the hardship of addiction recovery can be a great way to realize that you are not alone, that recovery is possible and that there are people here to help. Setting a goal to attend 3 meetings a week allows you to test the waters to see if AA or NA is right for you.
Find an Addiction Recovery Program
Not everyone is a fan of 12 step programs, however, there are alternatives including finding a recovery program or treatment centre that appeals to you. Great treatment centres and recovery programs will give you the tools necessary to live a sober life – for the rest of your life. Treatment for many is the first step to getting sober. Continued care and community help you stay sober. Depending on your budget, there are numerous programs available. Set a goal to research treatment centres and find one that is right for you. At House of Courage, we believe in facilitating the healing process by providing affordable addiction treatment options including therapy, education, meetings, personal training, housing, healthy meals and more.
For those looking to get sober in 2018, write down the smaller goals that will get you there and get to work achieving them. Recovery is a process, not a destination. By setting out to make these smaller changes, you are more likely to stick with them and sustain them to achieve successful sobriety. Take pride in the small achievements you make along your path to accomplishing your goals.
We wish you a healthy, happy and prosperous 2018. If you want to learn more about our recovery program, please do not hesitate to contact us.