When you have had a tough time in life, alcohol can quickly become your companion. For many people, alcohol has a way of numbing the emotions and blocking out the upset you have been experiencing. Sadly, resorting to alcohol over the long term can seriously harm your health. In addition to the damage it can do to your body, it can also cause serious problems in your relationships.
Becoming sober is a long-term challenge. Understanding how and why you have used alcohol is the first big step. Healing your body is another important part of recovery. A good, balanced diet and regular exercise not only nourishes you, but it can help your mental health improve too. Sleep should become easier and deeper. You should also feel a greater sense of self-worth by taking care of yourself in this way.
Many alcoholics find they have lost their job through their addiction. This causes strain on relationships and may even be the cause of a break-up. Taking part in a sobriety program often helps to prevent your life spiralling out of control. Instead, it empowers you to take control of yourself again. It may take time, but once you are sober, you can rebuild your life into something better and stronger.
If you have recently become sober, it can be a good idea to book into a sober living environment. This helps you test the waters of everyday life in a supportive environment. Things in life often don’t go how we hoped they would. You may suffer a knock-back or disappointment. You want to be in a place that will help you find positive ways to deal with this, instead of turning to alcohol.
Once you have turned that ‘corner’ and you are feeling confident and strong again, it is very easy to build up a quality of life that you want. It all takes time but committing yourself to a healthy, active life is one of the best ways to ensure it happens. Start by addressing your diet. If you are on a low income, consider filling out your meals with vegetables. These are generally cheaper than processed convenience meals. Buy meat in bulk and freeze portions of it ready to cook as you need.
Exercise releases ‘happy’ endorphins, but keeping active also keeps you busy. When you are on the go, you don’t have time to sit and dwell on things that cause upset. You also don’t have time to sit with restless hands that want to hold a beer bottle. Distractions like walking and other moderate exercise are a good way to cope in the early days of sobriety. If you join a gym, you can start enjoying the social life that comes with it, and make new friends that aren’t into drinking.
It doesn’t matter how bad things have been in the past. You can care for yourself enough to make a good life for yourself. It may start with a support group or a sober living environment, but eventually you will be independent enough to move on and move up. Happy days.