How to Maintain Motivation in Recovery After Treatment

Nov 6, 2023

It can be difficult to maintain motivation in recovery. Early recovery can be a very vulnerable time for some individuals making it especially difficult to stay motivated. Although this may be true, some individuals find it difficult to stay on track at any stage of recovery whether it is early or years down the road. This can be due to a lack of support as inpatient rehabilitation and some types of outpatient care provide direct support throughout treatment. Utilizing therapy and other sources of support such as aftercare services and alumni network programs at Renaissance Ranch can help one achieve long-term recovery for a better quality of life. 

What Does It Mean to Stay Motivated?

According to the Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, intrinsic motivation is defined by an individual’s voluntary tendency to take an interest by seeking out challenges and expanding their knowledge even without working toward an expected reward. One must be willing to explore new opportunities, face problems, and learn consistently. When an individual is motivated they are more apt to engage in activities if they find them inherently satisfying or even slightly fascinating. For example, an individual who is having difficulty coping with their condition may take an interest in new opportunities that may aid their recovery. When an individual stays motivated they may begin to see improvement in their mental health and overall daily life. 

Why Is It Important to Maintain Motivation in Recovery?

Recovery can pan out differently for everyone. For instance, early recovery can be a sensitive time for many individuals as it typically requires one to make major sacrifices in their life to promote ongoing improvement. Sacrifice may consist of finding new employment, removing friends who continue to abuse drugs or alcohol, changing one’s residence, and discontinuing bad habits. Therefore, early recovery can be a very busy phase for some individuals. When an individual eventually adapts to these changes, they may start to lack interest in some areas of life. On that account, long-term recovery can get boring for some individuals. Thus, maintaining motivation in recovery is crucial for achieving long-term sobriety. 

Based on a publication by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), an individual may begin to notice a shift in motivation shortly after being discharged from treatment. The ability to maintain motivation may fluctuate over time regardless of an individual’s state of mental health. Consequently, motivation is a critical element of thought and behavior change. If one cannot maintain motivation in recovery they are at an increased risk of having a substance relapse. Motivation cannot be simply given to an individual. One must learn to recognize the need for change by reflecting on the specific reason for their decision to remain abstinent from drugs and alcohol. 

Different Ways to Maintain Motivation in Recovery

Although an individual may have made certain changes, intense cravings can still be brought on by unwanted triggers. A good way to maintain motivation is by becoming more aware of these triggers and using the strategies learned in past treatment to appropriately respond to them without self-medicating with harmful substances. When an individual begins to gradually repeat bad habits, it is important to find various techniques to maintain motivation in recovery. Different ways to maintain motivation in recovery may include: 

  • Setting new goals and working toward them
  • Journaling steady progress
  • Practicing self-care
  • Creating a gratitude list
  • Reaching out for support
  • Surrounding oneself with positive individuals
  • Getting in touch with the community
  • Connecting with a higher power
  • Celebrating milestones

Utilizing Therapy at Renaissance Ranch to Maintain Motivation in Recovery After Treatment

Different factors can interfere with an individual’s ability to maintain motivation in recovery after treatment. For example, experiencing a traumatic event can sometimes feel like a major setback. Trauma can bring on a series of emotions that can negatively impact an individual’s state of mind. Therefore, using the skills learned in therapy can help one effectively respond without being brought down by difficult emotions for a prolonged period which often leads one to an unfortunate relapse. 

Continuing care with Renaissance Ranch can be highly beneficial for those who are seeking ongoing support services. Our sober living program can provide safety and accountability to those who lack confidence entering early recovery. Spending time with peers who are working toward the same goals can provide the encouragement needed to maintain motivation. The Band of Brothers Alumni Program can also be a great way to connect with other members of the sober community. Participating in alumni events can raise new opportunities and establish a foundation for life-long sobriety. 

Attending AA and NA meetings as well as volunteering with upcoming community events can be a great way to stand as an advocate for others. An individual may not only provide aid for themselves but others as well. When an individual helps others through experience they are reminding themselves every day why they chose to stay abstinent from drugs and alcohol. Thus, promoting long-term sobriety.

Here at Renaissance Ranch, we offer many different services Included in both our sober living and Band of Brothers Alumni Program. We believe recovery should be fun. We are ranked among the best in the nation for our success in bringing those through recovery. Sober living has been shown to increase the odds of long-term sobriety for addicts and alcoholics in early recovery. At Renaissance Ranch, support for our patients doesn’t end when they complete their stay at our program. The Brotherhood at Renaissance Ranch is a tight-knit group, where we all hold one another accountable for what it takes to stay sober. If you are facing challenges maintaining motivation in recovery call (801) 308-8898 to learn more.