As many of us know, as addicts and alcoholics, it can be hard to learn how to quiet our minds and relax our bodies. It becomes difficult for someone in recovery to relax in sobriety. For a long time we didn’t do much of any healthy relaxation and to quiet our mind we more or less just silenced it through drugs and alcohol. Now that we are sober, it is really common for us to feel like we have to make up for lost time, always be on the move, doing something, and we can find that when we are idle… our brains go to strange places.
Relaxation has multiple health benefits that will help you live a long and productive life. Being able to relax in sobriety on a daily basis will help reduce your risk of stroke and keep your blood pressure lower. Studies have shown that people with chronic stress are at double the risk to get the common cold, so relaxing can actually prevent you from getting sick. Relaxing daily can also help you from getting depressed, help you make better decisions and overall just keep you in a better mood on a day to day basis.
So, an important thing for us to learn is how to relax in sobriety and take it easy. It’s easier said than done, but it is possible! Here are some helpful tricks that can slow you down, and keep you in a positive state of mind.
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Work Out to relax in Sobriety!
Keeping the body active and the blood flowing releases endorphins. It is also can be a great form of meditation because you have your whole body and mind focused on one thing. There are hundreds of ways to stay active besides hitting the gym, try picking up your favorite childhood sport again or start swimming, or just walking every day. Grab some friends and get a game of ultimate frisbee going once a week, just get up and do some stuff.
Make some music, draw, paint, interpretive dance, who cares? Flex those mental muscles. Pick up an instrument, start a little flower garden, whatever you have been wanting to do for years but were always too fucked up to start. Just do it! Putting your time and energy into something that you can be proud of not only relaxes you but also boosts your self-esteem.
Listening to music is probably one of the most soothing activities humans can take part it. Whether you like old school hip hop, thrash metal, or Taylor Swift, put on your favorite jams, and sing at the top of your lungs or color in a coloring book. Music gets the mental juices flowing, and can be very relaxing and nostalgic.
Not only is cooking extremely relaxing, but getting yourself onto a better diet of home cooked meals will help you feel better all around. Our mental and physical states are largely influenced by what we put into our body, so if you prepare your own foods and cut down on sugars and processed meals, it will not only improve your thinking and memory, your mood will be positively affected, and you will have more healthy energy throughout the day!
Meditate to relax in Sobriety
The practice of meditation is an art that has been used for thousands of years to focus the mind, body, and spirit. However, it doesn’t only limit itself to sitting silently with your eyes closed like Buddha. If you find that sitting still is hard for you, try simply practicing some deep breathing exercises.
The goal of breathing exercises is to reach the relaxation response. When you reach that goal your heart rate decreases, breathing becomes slower and deeper, blood pressure drops or stabilizes, your muscles relax and your body begins to heal.
The key to deep breathing is to breathe from the abdomen, get as much air as possible in your lungs. You want your stomach and your chest to expand. When you take deep breaths from the abdomen, rather than shallow breaths from your upper chest, you inhale more oxygen. Try to hold each inhale for 4 seconds, then let it out slowly for 8. Look up some different deep breathing exercises and try to find out which one is best for you. This is by far one of the most proven ways to relax in sobriety.
Journaling and Gratitude Lists
Seeing and appreciating the blessings in our lives can sometimes be tricky, especially when it seems like nothing’s going right. However, finding and holding onto that feeling of gratitude can always bring us back to a mental calm and tranquility. Usually, we get stressed out because we feel like there isn’t enough time, enough money, or enough love, but when we stop and think about everything that we DO have, it reminds us that we are exactly where we should be and that everything is going to be alright. After all, despite a number of times that we probably should have died, we are still here and that is a blessing.
Help someone Else Relax in Sobriety!
One thing that is 100% sure to get your mind off your own stresses and anxieties, is being of service to someone else. Whether it means just calling a friend to see how they are doing or volunteering at a shelter somewhere. When we are of service to others, with no expectation of something in return, we are completely getting out of our own heads. This allows us to be able to see our own situation with a new perspective when we come back to it.
If sometimes you feel like a chicken running around with your head cut off, be assured that you are not alone. Addict/Alcoholic or not, everyone on this planet struggles with the fear of what if? What if I don’t get this done, what if they don’t like me, what if I can’t stay sober? It is part of the human condition to be driven by fear, however, we of the 12 step programs have been lucky enough to be given an alternative to living in this fear. If you take some of these suggestions, you surely will find your personal way to relax in sobriety and have a good time.
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If you have found yourself or a loved one suffering from alcoholism or addiction, you are not alone! If you are ready to change your life and live free of addiction, then FindAddictionRehabs.com can help. We give you the jump start to recovery you need. Our holistic program is unique in that it doesn’t just treat the addiction, it treats the whole person. For more information on our program, call today.
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