14 May Aftercare – Continuing Patterns of Rehabilitation and Support
The weeks immediately following your discharge from a residential drug rehabilitation program are crucial to your long term success. This is the time when you will put your new sobriety skills to the test, build your support system at home, and face your daily life as a sober person. The habits you establish during this time will make or break your recovery process, so it’s important to continue your rehabilitation efforts during this time, and throughout the rest of your life as needed. Implementing the following suggestions will help keep you on the path to sobriety that you started when you began rehab.
Enroll in a Long-Term Treatment Program
When deciding which residential rehabilitation program to check in to, you may want to put the ones that include aftercare at the top of your list. Your residential stay is meant to give you a productive start at your new life but is in no way the entirety of your recovery process. You will need the continued support of counseling, group therapy, and other tools to help you stay focused and keep going. These programs usually offer therapy sessions several times a week, during times of the day that will work around your employment or school schedule.
Attending a 12-step program that meets every day has been a real lifeline for people who struggle during those first few weeks out of recovery. This is why most 12-step programs suggest that you attend 90 meetings during your first 90 days in the program. An outpatient program will help you to maintain and build upon the progress you made during your initial residential stage.
Be Open to Advice
The hard truth is that you got yourself into the position you were in before rehab through a series of bad decisions. Addiction adds further complication by impairing your judgment and making it difficult to know what the best course of action might be. Now that you’ve made the good decision to complete a drug recovery program, you need to be open to advice from others who care about you and your success. The skills you’ve developed through therapy and the suggestions given to you by your counselors are tried and true methods that are meant to help you overcome your addiction. Your team of professionals will help you to establish a plan for staying sober once you leave rehab and it is imperative that you follow it.
There are other people in your life who care about your success as well, including close friends and family members. Choose to surround yourself with people who are trustworthy and with relationships that are uplifting and positive. Trust those who love you and listen to them when they encourage you to take steps in a good direction, as well as when they discourage you from potentially destructive behaviors. You may feel like you’re strong enough to take care of yourself at this point, but you will have a much easier time if you allow those who love you to help you along the way.
Choosing an experienced sponsor from your 12-step program and talking with them every day will give you another valuable relationship with someone who has experience in dealing with the same kinds of problem that you’re working to overcome.
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