staying busy during addiction recovery

Staying Busy During Addiction Recovery doesn’t have to be a drag. Have you ever wondered how to keep yourself busy while on your long and dull days towards addiction recovery? After completing a teen addiction treatment program & knowing how to give up cocaine along with various other substances, and being on the road to recovery, this crucial stage in your life presents a perfect opportunity to try new things or to revive your previous enjoyable hobbies. Regardless of where you are, know that keeping yourself busy during your addiction recovery period is one of the best things you can do to avoid relapse. Once you have established a productive recovery routine, you’ll experience a feeling of security, stability, and fulfillment.

Ideas to Help You Stay Busy In Recovery

There are several ways to keep yourself busy or productive. However, you must learn how to have a dynamic mindset to achieve a certain kind of fulfillment. Fortunately, you can develop it by establishing a good routine. The process involves: 
  • Pampering yourself.
  • Good work.
  • Community Involvement or volunteering.
  • Spending quality time with family, and most especially having “me” time.
Below is a list of positive activities that can help you see and enjoy a better version of yourself.
  1. Try a New Hobby Finding an enjoyable hobby is certainly one of the best ways to occupy your time. After all, the term hobby refers to things or activities that you enjoy doing. Get imaginative and think about all the things you’ve always wanted to try: dancing, painting, weekend hiking, volunteering for a charity cause, practicing floor yoga, playing instruments, and the likes.
  1. Exercise Exercise is not just good physically but also for inner well-being. It does not just make you physically fit but also lowers your stress levels. Performing different types of activities even in a few hours can help stimulate blood flow. As emphasized by the experts, doing exercises can help you feel better both physically and emotionally. 
  1. Develop Your Culinary Skills Developing one’s culinary skills has become one of the most influential and practical ingredients of today’s recovery process. This skill aims to create a platform by focusing on following directions to gain a life skill realistically. However, that’s only the beginning of cooking –knowing proper nutrition and self-accountability are also included in the picture. Promoting wellness and having this type of practical skill that includes planning, preparing, and execution means that you’ll have one less thing to worry about when adjusting to real life.
  1. Clean and Organize Your Living Space When our comfort zone is cluttered, untidy, or unorganized, it becomes more challenging to focus on what we want to do. According to studies, a messy and disorganized space has a significant impact on our brains. The mess is displacing us. In recovery, maintaining new habits can activate energy as it helps the brain to recover. One way to help is to make a plan to declutter space. 
Think of it like this. A tidy and organized space leads to a faster and healthy recovery. It’s OK to create space for your recovery. Here’s how:
  • Make a mess-free space the first plan in your recovery.
  • Create a comfortable and worry-free, and less harmful space to support your recovery.
  • Value the sense of responsibility of cleaning your space as a source of being comfortable.
  • Cultivate enthusiasm and strength to discard things that do not enhance your recovery.
  • Make your space an inspiration for your well-being and joy.
  1. Be Creative Creativity comes in different forms; it plays a crucial role in recovery. People who suffer from an addiction disorder experience alexithymia – a condition in which a person has difficulty identifying and describing feelings. Being creative includes an interest in arts, music, acting, singing, photography, and writing. It helps people explore their feelings by expressing and interpreting their thoughts, memories, and emotions.
  1. Go Outside Medical professionals have proven the benefits of spending time outdoors as an essential part of addiction recovery. Going outside while in recovery encourages you to exercise, reduces feelings of depression, helps you stay calm, and promotes better sleep. There’s nothing more meaningful than watching the sunrise to uplift the spirits, read your favorite book in the library, or jog under the lush green forestry –an actual language of peace and harmony. Though some people may enjoy some aspects of nature more than others, there seems to be a significant relationship between the outdoors and mental and physical health.
When going through recovery, being socially inclined can be very hard for people experiencing depression and other mood disorders. They may isolate themselves from friends and family because they feel like a burden. Going to parties can be stressful because they know they’ll have to deal with uncomfortable talks or temptation in their imagination.
If you can organize a party where they will feel safe, comfortable and relaxed, and welcome, that’s an inch closer to their recovery.
Here’s how.
  • Remove temptations such as alcohol or weed and other substances.
  • Serve delightful foods that are very inviting to taste.
  • Set-up relaxed lighting.
  • Let everyone feel safe and comfortable.
  • Keep it simple yet engaging. 
  1. Be a Tourist in Your City Traveling has the power to push you to wonderful discoveries, new roads, and places you’ve never been before. It can also mean taking an incredible journey toward recovery. It will allow you a fresh start somewhere new or even within the same city. If you can’t go far due to various circumstances, be a tourist in your own city. You might even get surprised at the things that you haven’t noticed before.   Having that purposeful travel can reinforce your dedication to abstinence and to your treatment plan. Another benefit of being a tourist in your city is the exposure to different places that may lead to new understanding, fulfillment, and engagement. For example, traveling to a facility in your locality may provide more holistic practices that are beneficial and will expose the patient to a new lifestyle.
  1. Meditation As we strongly believe in the most comprehensive and efficient approach to treatment, meditation towards recovery is a widespread practice because of the many benefits that we think it has. Meditating during the recovery process allows you to set time to have renewed inner peace aside to stop and relax. Some of the known benefits of meditating are; it reduces stress, boosts mental health, improves physical fitness, provides better sleep, manages pain, and strengthens faith.
  1. Focus on Home Projects Even if you live in small spaces, you can still spend a weekend clearing out clutter, ironing and washing clothes, and sprucing up the place. For people who realize the value of a healing environment in recovery, focusing on home projects is one of the best options. It considers the whole person and the many factors that make their experience unique by giving grounding interest and attention to home-bound projects that may lead to a complete sense of responsibility, dedication, and commitment to indoor tasks. 
  1. Find New Ways to Explore Spirituality Spirituality is a life aspect that refers to being introspective, an individual’s way of seeking and expressing the meaning and purpose of their humanity, and the way they connect to self, to others, to nature, and sacredness. Anyone can benefit from spiritual practices, but the search for enlightenment is particularly beneficial for those struggling with life’s problems. When incorporated into the recovery process, whether just reading motivational scriptures, attending a religious activity, or saying your daily prayer, Spirituality can provide you with a better understanding of yourself. It can also help you find your greater sense of purpose. 
  1. Consider Getting a Pet Pets tend to have a deep and connected emotional response to humans. Study shows that having a pet as a companion present during therapy sessions proved calming to many patients. Notably, patients with mental health disorders have been found to experience reduced depression and anxiety.  Mental health problems symptoms are lessened through the support of therapy pets when it visits patients. Also, companion pets have proven to be very helpful in reducing anxiety and loneliness, especially to people with post-traumatic stress disorder. 
Why Does Staying Busy Help
Staying busy during the recovery period isn’t just about avoiding relapse, although that’s one primary reason. This action means that as your body, hormones, and mind focus on a specific activity or routine, you might no longer experience anxiety and other shifts. You have to be convinced and be fully engaged with it in order for you to stay busy and be productive in the long run. It may sound very awkward to think about staying active when in recovery, but keeping your mind occupied can keep you from thinking about your problem behaviors.
So, when staying busy during addiction recovery,  whatever you choose to focus on, whether working toward a long-term goal with your family or spending time doing an activity that helps you relax, go on your way, and strive to find the balance. The goal is to quit thinking about bad ideas and keep your mind focused on healthy things so you can begin to recover, heal and change for the better.