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For most people, drug rehab is a major learning experience. Rehab, after all, is about more than simply getting through the withdrawal symptoms of inhalants and quitting alcohol. It is a process during which the addict has a chance to reflect on the behaviors and habits that led him or her into becoming an addict and to learn from his or her mistakes. It is an experience that involves developing new skills for coping with stress in life and becoming more capable of standing up to the pressures of everyday living. It is rare for an individual to complete rehab and to step back into the outside world without feeling that he or she has learned important lessons and is in many ways a changed person. No two people share an identical experience during rehab, and the lessons that each individual learns are bound to be very personal ones.
There are, however, certain life lessons that tend to be learned during rehab:
Don’t Let The Perfect People To Be The Enemy Of The Good
Constant dedication to the achievement of perfection is a valuable and admirable trait. It can, however, get in your way. If you are always holding yourself up to the standard of perfection in everything you do, and beating yourself up when you fail to reach this standard, you are setting yourself up for failure. Whether through lack of time, resources, skill, or training, it is rarely possible to achieve absolute perfection. Refusing to be satisfied with an acceptable result means that you will be subjecting yourself to enormous stress that simply is not necessary. As a consequence, you will tend to have to find a way to relieve this pressure, which can easily lead to drug or alcohol use.
You Are The Only Person In Charge Of You
The things that other people say and do will tend to influence your own mood and emotions. Your friends and family members may have the power to frustrate you, uplift you, make you angry or disappointed, to support you, or make you feel loved. In the final analysis, however, it is only you who has the power to determine how you feel. As the saying goes, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” You can choose to feel upset, or you can choose to accept what you face and to make the best of things. Harboring resentment, feeling depressed or similar attitudes will very rarely achieve the goal of changing things. Instead, they will only make you feel worse and have the tendency to further solidify the situation. You can feel bad about a situation, or you can look for solutions and ways to move forward in your life.
Life Is Happening Now And You Might As Well Enjoy It
Nobody ever lays on their deathbed, looking back on life and wishing that they had spent more time drunk or high. Every moment that you spend under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a moment wasted, a time when you were cut off from the world and numbed to the full sensations of living. A large percentage of addicts got to that point because they were looking for an escape from an unpleasant present-time reality, but substance abuse is no solution for stress. It only makes you less capable of handling your problems, physiologically, emotionally, and mentally. Rather than fleeing from life, embrace every moment and live it as you will never get it back since you never will.
Living With The Golden Mean Does Not Translate To Boredom
The golden mean, an approach to life in which one avoids excess in the belief that this will result in happiness, is often shrugged off as being a timid or overly conservative way of living. Instead, many people choose to “live fast and die young.” Living your life in accordance with the golden mean does not, however, require you to accept a mediocre or hum-drum existence. Instead, you should simply avoid going to excess with those things that can cause harm. No matter how pleasurable alcohol or drugs may be in the short-term, they will only cause problems in the long run. You do not have to burn yourself out and go to extremes in order to enjoy life. By refraining from substance abuse, getting good rest, exercise, and nutrition, and applying common sense to your approach to handling people and situations, you can leave yourself free from the problems, distress, and failure that result from engaging in excess in life.
Five Things To Remember When Checking Out Of Drug Rehab
You’re finally checking out of rehab and may have 100 things running through your head. Will you be okay? How will things be different? Will you be able to effectively handle the challenges presented to you after treatment.
Here are 5 things to remember when checking out of rehab:
1. You Are In Charge
There are different schools of thought on the topic of whether addiction is a disease if it is an entirely emotional and mental problem if it is a lack of willpower or a combination of some or all of these. Regardless of how you became addicted, one thing cannot be disputed: You are the only person who will determine whether you are able to stay sober. You are the one who will decide to refrain from drinking or drug use, and it is up to you to do everything in your power to preserve your future by consolidating the gains you have made during rehab. While you may have had help, nobody else made the decision for you to quit, and you are the only person who exerted the effort and persistence it took for you to achieve sobriety.
2. Recovery Is An Ongoing Process
Congratulations on quitting drinking or drug use. Well done on making it through detox and withdrawals and on taking the necessary steps to complete your rehab. What you have done is praiseworthy and impressive, but it is not the end. Even those who are most successful in rehab do not complete the experience in the condition of being cured of addiction and entirely immune to the possibility of future substance abuse. Now that you are out, you have to readjust to life in the outside world, and you have to make certain changes to yourself, your routine, and your relationships in the ongoing process of recovery. If you simply assume that you are “done” with recovery, you will be leaving yourself exposed to the risk of falling back into the trap. Rehab gets you over the major hurdle of quitting and puts you a long way down the road to recovery, but it does not mean that you are fully cured.
3. You Can’t Afford A Relapse
Rehab is not cheap. Depending on the program, it may cost thousands or tens of thousands of dollars per month. Regardless of whether you paid for it out of pocket or had a large portion of the costs covered through insurance, the bill for the rehab program is not the full picture. In addition to the costs of rehab, you also have to consider the amount of money you lost by missing out on work during the time when you were taking off to participate in rehab. This may not only have cost you a paycheck but might even have meant that you had to give up your job. Beyond the purely economic costs of rehab, there is also the social capital of the belief and confidence that your friends and family members have placed in you, hoping that you can make the most of your second chance in life and that you will be worthy of their trust. With so much at stake, you cannot afford to take any chances with your continued sobriety. By taking even a single drink or using drugs in some other way, you could easily throw all of this out the window and undo everything you have worked so hard to achieve.
4. It May Be Time To Meet New People
Drinking and drug use are usually not things that an addict always does alone. In most cases, an addict will have a few friends or even an entire social circle with whom he or she engages in substance abuse. The other people may or may not be addicts, but they are nonetheless people with whom the addict is accustomed to getting drunk or high. Now that you have done the work of quitting and traveling towards recovery, it might be time for you to reevaluate your list of friends and raise the question of which ones you should actually be spending time with. Even if they respect the fact that you have quit and do not offer you a drink or a hit, being in their presence will tend to restimulate your own memories and habit patterns and could very well trigger a relapse.
5. Look For New Activities
While you were living as an addict, your life probably revolved around the ever-present desire to get high or drunk. You worked to get money for drugs or alcohol, you tried to find ways to squeeze in substance abuse during the day, and your social activities were geared toward this as well. Taking up a new hobby, getting involved in exercise or sports, volunteering in the community or any other type of new activity for you to get involved in can be of enormous assistance in your effort to maintain sobriety. For one thing, new activities will help you to avoid the things you used to do that would lead to substance use. For another thing, you can avoid boredom that could leave you fully exposed to lingering yearnings for drugs or alcohol. Finally, a new activity can help you pull your attention out of the past and into building a future of happiness and a rich and rewarding life.