Everything is so new when you first enter recovery. It can be really hard, but in my experience, early sobriety was kind of an adventure. Coming out of the chaos of active addiction and then the novelty of early recovery, you’re left navigating daily life sober.
Life is different when you’re not dealing with the drama of active addiction, but that doesn’t mean it’s boring. I’ve found there’s a lot of joy in the work of recovery and in learning to be more fully present where I am. Life will always bring ups and downs; recovery allows us to cope with them in a healthier way—and ultimately find more meaning from them.
But what about the little mundanities of everyday life? As Charlie, who I interviewed for the Sober Stories series, said, “If you’re in recovery, that is a consistent, everyday decision. Even if it’s more subconscious on some days than others, it’s still a decision every single day.” This means being in recovery through both the intense times and the more mundane ones.
I’ve found that most things in sobriety can be a source of growth—even days that seem ordinary. On any given day, I may have a vulnerable conversation I wouldn’t have been able to have in active addiction, realize my body’s needs in a way I was incapable of before, or sit in painful emotions without trying to numb in some way.
While the big moments can also be huge sources of change, they aren’t all that define your recovery. All the decisions you make in your daily life can add up to a tremendous amount of growth.
It’s helpful to keep connected to your support system as you navigate daily life in recovery. They can help ground you as you cope with everyday ups and downs. Things like friendship, meditation, therapy, hobbies, and others can help you build healthy coping skills and spend your time in fulfilling ways.
When you get further into recovery, everyday life can take over; recovery may not always be at the forefront of your mind. But I’ve found that it’s usually not far from my thoughts either. The changes and growth I’ve experienced are so profound that I’m reminded of them regularly, while I’m just living my daily life.
If you are struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder, there is help and hope. TruHealing Centers offers high-quality treatment for addiction and mental health disorders in facilities across the country. Our staff—many of whom are in recovery themselves—will help you build the skills to cope with whatever life brings. To learn more, call an admissions specialist at 410-593-0005.