4 Reasons It’s Important to Know How You’re Feeling after Treatment
The benefits of feeling emotionally and physically well go far beyond the ones we can mention. It is a well-known fact that performance, stamina, motivation and other needed traits rely heavily on mental and physical wellness, so it is easy to understand why emotions and addiction recovery are closely related, particularly when someone is trying to stay sober after finishing rehab. The time after treatment ends is a critical moment to evaluate yourself as you begin a new life in sobriety.
Many studies have shown a correlation between addiction recovery and improved mental and physical states. For example, two studies found in the US National Library of Medicine shed light on how positive emotions affect health-promoting functions, such as physical and emotional wellness. These studies focused on how positive emotions affect negative feelings, along with how preparing the body and mind help maintain recovery. After treatment ends, recovery may very well depend upon how you are feeling and how often you check on your emotions. The following 4 reasons show why these acts are so important:
- To deal with shame – Shame is a common feeling after being addicted to drugs. It brings a negative view of oneself and may even make the sufferer believe he is unworthy of treatment or recovery. The result of allowing this feeling may cause the patient to believe that, by continuing substance abuse, he is punishing himself, or that drugs are the only way to escape pain. The National Institute on Drug Abuse recommends professional help to replace shame with self-respect.
- To keep the hope of recovery – Hope is one of the most influential emotions in addiction recovery. Patients who lack this belief often end up feeling discouraged after having difficulties with cravings, or they finally give up on recovery after they relapse. Other recovering addicts have such low opinions of themselves that they believe recovery is impossible. Keeping hope alive is beneficial whenever patients confront difficult conditions and challenges; instead of being overwhelmed by problems, hopeful patients believe they can overcome any issue to continue with the recovery process.
- To continue making progress – It is important to know that finishing addiction treatment is not the end of the road, but that it is necessary to stay sober. For example, someone who believes she has already learned everything to know and that she is fully recovered will need to readjust her vision if she is to stay clean for the rest of her life. Feeling overconfident may hinder progress so much that the addict stops attending her aftercare sessions or ignores the suggestions to participate in support groups. In an effort to explain recovery, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence states that improved health and wellness are needed on a continued basis, and these qualities come from gratitude and hope.
- To identify your possible triggers – Constantly checking on your emotions and state of mind can help you identify issues that trigger drug cravings. A therapist can help patients see how emotions and recovery play together, especially if people pinpoint their feelings that threaten recovery. The goal of such treatment is to replace negative traits with more positive ones. Therapy can also help you develop strategies and coping methods to stay sober when you are facing difficult situations.
With the right help, you can not only get clean from drugs, but also stay that way.
Addiction Recovery as an Individualized Process
After rehab ends, it is unhealthy to ignore negative feelings in recovery, because it will only result in stress and anxiety. Furthermore, such feelings will make recovering addicts believe that recovery causes those feelings; in reality, recovery should be a time to work on improving yourself with a positive attitude.
Addiction recovery is an individualized process, because it deeply relies on your own strength, values, abilities and resilience. However, as explained by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, you will develop these characteristics over time, so you should not expect them to be innate. Being optimistic throughout addiction recovery is an integral part of resilience and one of the best ways to stay sober while overcoming challenges as they come. In other words, to resist relapse after addiction treatment ends, learn how to identify your feelings so you can address them as they occur.
Help Staying Sober During Addiction Recovery
Give us a call if you would like free help for yourself or a loved one who suffers from substance abuse, addiction or a mental health disorder. Our admissions coordinators are ready 24 hours a day at a toll-free helpline; they can help you find the right program according to your needs, whether that means intervention services or a rehab center. They will also answer your questions about using health insurance to cover the costs of treatment. Now is an excellent time to call, so reach out for help today.