Why Creating a New Routine Is Valuable in Recovery
Addiction is defined by chaos. When drugs or alcohol control your life, everything is thrown off balance — your job, your family and your daily routine. Recovery invites you to rediscover a sense of order. That’s why most treatment programs include rigid schedules where you wake up at the same time, eat regular meals and participate in individualized therapies at set times. Once you’re out on your own, though, you may find that maintaining that same level of discipline is difficult.
Let’s discuss the importance of creating a new daily routine and ways you can establish structure into your early Recovery.
The Importance of Making a Schedule
Recovery brings many changes to your life — some exciting, others challenging. Even the most positive changes can feel physically or emotionally taxing. By establishing a new routine and building structure into your life, you may find it easier to adjust. A schedule also adds some much-needed predictability in the face of all these changes.
Here are just a few ways that routine can enhance your Recovery and reduce your risk of relapse.
1. Reprogram Your Body’s Rhythm
Addiction leads to a variety of unhealthy habits for many people. From irregular sleep to lack of a nutritious diet, your body needs to recover. A healthy routine gives your body time to reacclimate to healthy living. As you establish a rhythm to your days, your body learns to adjust to usual times for sleeping, eating and exercising. Routine reprograms your body to anticipate these healthy changes.
2. Aid Your Mental Wellbeing
While change is a necessary part of Recovery, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Many people in Recovery struggle with anxiety as they strive to keep up with the many changes happening all around them. A predictable routine allows your body and mind to work together to establish and reinforce these new healthy behavior patterns.
3. Avoid Restlessness and Boredom
Boredom is a trigger that’s difficult to navigate in early Recovery. When you feel restless, it’s not uncommon to long for those substances that once filled your days. Routine and structure offer an antidote to restlessness and boredom. When your time is filled and every hour accounted for, you’ll find it easier to keep your mind off the past and focus on today.
Tips for Establishing a Routine in Recovery
Build a routine that works for you. A structured day will look different for every person in Recovery. Not sure how to start? Here are some simple ways to establish a rhythm to your day:
- Sleep: Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. Even if you’re not tired, try establishing a bedtime routine, such as brushing your teeth and reading before turning out the lights.
- Regular mealtimes: Hunger is a common trigger. You can try to avoid it by setting regular mealtimes. Be sure to include healthy snacks throughout your day.
- Exercise: Fitness is a natural mood booster and an excellent way to get your body healthy after battling addiction. Choose a regular workout time at least three to five days a week.
- Socialization and fun: Friendship and fun will make your Recovery journey a more enjoyable experience. Go out with your friends and make time for things you like to do.
Learn the Joy of Newness at 7 Summit Pathways in Tampa, FL
If you’re in the grips of an addiction to drugs or alcohol, 7 Summit Pathways wants to help you discover your path to Recovery. Our compassionate team understands what you’re going through, and we want to help you with a holistic approach to your healing. Our individualized treatment programs ensure you can overcome obstacles to find a better life and a new normal.
We invite you to contact us today to learn how we can help.