Amusement parks have a way of overloading the senses. Thrilling screams fill the air as rollercoasters fly past overhead, shops full of souvenirs are visible every which way and aromas of French fries and other delicious foods triggers a low growl in your stomach. This environment is always exciting and overwhelming, no matter how many times you’ve experienced it.
This is what many of us may feel once social distancing protocols from COVID-19 are fully lifted and a tidal wave of entertainment and social experiences reopen. If you’re in addiction recovery, having access to the environments that cultivated your substance abuse again may trigger cravings. Fortunately, there are ways you can maintain your recovery, even when COVID-19 is past us.
Staying Sober When Social Distancing Ends
Social distancing may have actually felt like a blessing in disguise, helping you avoid bars and other places where you drank or used drugs during your addiction. As life slowly returns to normal again, here are five ways you can keep your recovery going strong:
- Keep Your Current Routine Alive: Social distancing most likely had you develop a new recovery routine. With less social and entertainment options, a routine keeps your day grounded and your head clear. When social distancing ends, you don’t have to give up anything that’s been helping your recovery. For example, maybe COVID-19 has you spending more time outside. Do your best to make sure you’re still getting plenty of fresh air once everything reopens.
- Connect with People in Person: It’s possible that you haven’t been to an in-person support group since social distancing started. While technology makes virtual support groups possible, it’s easier to build meaningful relationships in person. Once social distancing ends, spend time with your support group of friends and family, and participate in in-person recovery meetings again. Seeing your support network in person more often and sharing your progress can help empower your recovery.
- Identify Your Personal Triggers Again: This time away from everyday life may have helped you forget your triggers. As public places start to reopen, you’ll want to remind yourself of these triggers again. During your first week free of social distancing, make a running list of triggers on a notepad or your phone, then create strategies to avoid them.
- Look for Volunteer Opportunities: Volunteering to help others can be a valuable experience in recovery. It has the potential to help you build confidence in recovery and learn to appreciate different perspectives. Once social distancing ends, there will likely be more opportunities to volunteer in your community. Working at a soup kitchen or helping walk dogs at animal shelters can make you feel valued and appreciated.
- Remember How Resilient You Are: COVID-19 has undoubtedly caused some major adjustments in your life. If anything in your recovery journey starts to feel rough, think back to all the challenges that you have overcome. Social distancing has been tough for all of us, but it’s also prepared you for many obstacles ahead.
Find Personalized Support for Your Recovery
Footprints Beachside Recovery is a small, family-run addiction treatment center in Florida. We’ve been through addiction ourselves and know firsthand how challenging the recovery journey can be at times. The good news is you don’t have to go through it alone. On the calming and scenic shores of St. Pete Beach, you can find hope for lasting recovery.
Whether you need some extra guidance or have recently relapsed, our expert continuum of care can help. Contact our admissions team today to learn more about our personalized approach to addiction treatment today.