The Importance of Finding An Outlet in Recovery

The Importance of Finding An Outlet in Recovery

 

By Kevin Repass

Experience

As a former drug addict and alcoholic in recovery, I have found that it is extremely valuable to find some type of outlet or activities you can enjoy to relieve stress, focus or express yourself. Finding an outlet can help maintain sobriety and prevent relapse. My outlet is the gym and writing. Sticking with a gym routine makes me feel better about myself both mentally and physically. Another outlet I use is writing. If I find myself feeling stuck in my head or having a craving for substances, I have found writing poetry or lyrics clears my head. I can capture my feelings at the time and release it onto a piece of paper. Outlets can come in the form of anything- exercise, music, meditation, prayer, arts, and crafts- anything that can keep you in the moment, find inner peace and allow you to release whatever it is you’re feeling at the time. It can also pull your attention away from triggers and curb or prevent cravings.

Way Out

Finding an outlet isn’t just a form of release but also a replacement. In fact, finding a healthy outlet can replace your old, unhealthy habit of drinking and drug use. Finding an activity you can actually enjoy sober is vital. You must find activities and outlets that can help you physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. I highly suggest finding ones that you never tried sober. Try to avoid activities you enjoyed while drinking or using, as those can be potential triggers for relapse.

Way Forward

If you feel lost and don’t know where to begin when it comes to finding an outlet, the simple answer is an experiment. Step out of your comfort zone. Take advantage of everything and everyone around you. Don’t be afraid to explore new places and try new things, even if you don’t think you would enjoy it. You never know until you try. Who knows, maybe you had a hidden talent or niche that you otherwise wouldn’t have known existed. Finding an outlet can also help you connect with other people. Getting yourself out there can help you find other people who share similar interests which, in turn, can build a positive environment and social network valuable to your recovery. Finding an outlet can also help you rediscover, reinvent and find yourself again.

Kevin Repass is a recovering drug addict and alcoholic. He is a writer for https://yourfirststep.org/ a south Florida-based company dedicated to providing resources and information to all those struggling with drug and alcohol addiction.

Do You Know Enough About Psychotherapy?

WHAT IS PSYCHOTHERAPY AND HOW EXACTLY DOES IT HELP?

Most people have heard the term “psychotherapy”, but don’t have an accurate concept of what it really is. Their ideas about it are formed by television shows instead of facts.

So what exactly is psychotherapy?

Psychotherapy aims to enable patients, or clients, to recognize both positive and negative feelings, and what triggers or situations can make them feel good, nervous, or depressed. This allows them to cope with difficulties in a more constructive way.

Most courses of therapy last less than a year, and clients who are excited to change and willing to work often report great outcomes.

Psychotherapy helps with a diverse set of problems, including depression and low self-esteem, addiction and family quarrels. Anyone overwhelmed by daily problems and an inability to cope can benefit from psychotherapy. Learn more about psychotherapy careers.

Types of Psychotherapy

At least 500 different types of psychotherapy exist, according to one estimate by University of Scranton psychologist John Norcross. Given the vast number, researchers can’t dedicate the time to investigate whether they are beneficial, so they focus on the most frequently used types.

As Scientific American noted:

These include behavior therapy (altering unhealthy behaviors), cognitive-behavior therapy (altering maladaptive ways of thinking), psychodynamic therapy (resolving unconscious conflicts and adverse childhood experiences), interpersonal therapy (remedying unhealthy ways of interacting with others), and person-centered therapy (helping clients to find their own solutions to life problems).

Let’s look at each of these in a bit more detail:

Empty Nest Syndrome: 5 Ways To Live Your Life When The Kids Have Gone

Goodbye for now (source)

It’s the moment many parents dread: the day when the kids leave home and start a new life of their own elsewhere. They have flown the nest, and the poor parents are left behind to pick up the pieces. Either that or they finally breathe a sigh of relief and look forward to having the house to themselves again.

If you are suffering from empty nest syndrome, there is helpful advice online on how to deal with the grieving process. You may also benefit from speaking to a counsellor if you are particularly struggling with the loneliness you feel now that the kids have gone. Of course, life isn’t over for you, and you are more than just a parent. Rather than dwell in sorrow for too long, take the time to start living your life for yourself again.

Here are five ways to live your life after the kids have flown the nest.

1. Go back to work

You may have given up work to have children, so consider getting back into the career you started years ago. Alternatively, think about something where you can use your parenting skills, such as a career in nursing. Going back to school can be scary if you have been out of education, but courses such as the master’s in nursing education can be done online and at home.

2. Reconnect with your partner

Having kids takes its toll on any relationship, so now is the time to fall back in love with your partner all over again. You probably sat at home and stressed about the kids together when they were still at home, and you are likely to do this now they’ve left. Stop it! Spend time with your partner doing the things you both enjoy doing, and create new experiences together that are all about the two of you, and nothing to do with the children.

3. Meet new people

Whether you go it alone, or bring your partner with you, find ways to meet other people. Sites such as Meetup.com will direct you to groups and places where you can make new friends of any age. Not only that, but you can take part in some fantastic new hobbies that will distract you from any empty nest feelings you are suffering from.

4. Do something with the house

What you do with your house is up to you, but you may want to empty your kid’s room and use it for something new. You might want to convert it into a study, guest bedroom, or a den, as possible examples. Redecorate it as you want, and you may find the change of decor helps you to deal with your happy but grief-stricken memories of time at home with the kids. You will never forget your children, but constant reminders are bound to trigger your tear ducts for a while.

5. Look after yourself

You won’t feel good about yourself if you are stuck in empty nest syndrome. Sitting at home on the couch all day, with a box of chocolates in one hand and a handkerchief in the other, is not going to do much to help your mood. Instead, focus on a healthy lifestyle, such as joining a gym or a dance class to get your body into shape. Not only will you benefit your body, but the ‘feel good’ chemicals released during exercise will be good for your mind, as well.

Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

 

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