“I can’t stay sober, but we can,” is often said in 12-Step programs. Individuals don’t need to attempt sobriety alone. Finding extra support during the recovery process is essential. Although recovery from addiction is a personal journey, connecting with a sober community during recovery provides invaluable resources. A sober community nurtures each recovering addict with the necessary support to find sobriety and making it last, while offering opportunities to build companionships and long-lasting friendships. Having a community and actively participating in it allows the resident to rebuild their life without drugs, and add new meaning to it.
Addicts in recovery often show a tendency to withdraw from others. This can happen because they feel guilt or shame and want to avoid people bringing up their addiction during conversation. Another reason might be that they feel the need to protect themselves from people and places they perceive as a threat to their recovery. This isolating behavior can foster depression, feelings of resentment toward the self and other people, and make it harder to move forward from the past. Being surrounded by a caring community during recovery decreases the likelihood of isolating behaviors; as it provides the friendship and support the addict requires during vulnerable times. Experiencing a sense of belonging and inclusion encourages the addict to develop trust and meaningful relationships, learn how to ask for help, take suggestions, and make healthy lifestyle changes.
Another principal objective in recovery involves encouraging the addict to take responsibility for their behavior and choices. Accountability is absolutely necessary for the addict to make a change in their life. Instead of putting something off for example, being held accountable will push the addict to work harder, make the change, and stay motivated. Having a community to hold the addict accountable and provide encouragement will inspire the addict to stretch themselves in ways they weren’t able to in the past. Outside support gives the addict the extra strength to make the right choices. When the addict has made commitments and is held responsible by their community, they will be motivated to work hard to achieve a healthful, sober life.
Besides just physically quitting drinking or using drugs, recovery also requires creating a lifestyle in which both the body and mind are nourished. A community of wholesome influences inspires and motivates the addict to move forward, while also keeping the focus on sobriety. Engaging in activities that are enjoyable and give the addict meaning is one of the first steps toward building a fresh lifestyle. For example, volunteering in the community or starting a new hobby are two such activities that can facilitate self-growth, and contribute to overall happiness. In addition to eating right, getting enough sleep, and establishing an active routine, addicts in recovery will feel healthier and even experience less stress if they get involved with and connect to their community. Moving forward is a pivotal step in recovery, and actively moving forward together with their community is the best way for an addict to attain a fully nourished lifestyle.
“The Steps to Complete Drug and Alcohol Recovery.” Recovery.org. N.p., 24 Nov. 2015. Web. 08 Feb. 2017.
“The Vital Role Accountability Plays in Recovery.” Transcend Recovery Community. N.p., 25 May 2016. Web. 08 Feb. 2017.