Updated on 3/8/2023
Having hope is a continuous internal desire to not give up on yourself and believe that things will work out for the best. During addiction recovery, staying hopeful is one of the most important aspects of success. However, staying sober after drug use is no easy task. This blog offers tips to continue having hope in long-term addiction recovery.
What to Do When You Are Losing Hope in Recovery
Long-term addiction recovery requires a daily commitment to maintaining hope. To help you stay optimistic and motivated, here are six simple tips to use during your journey through recovery.
#1 Make a List of What You Have Accomplished in Your Sobriety
When you are constantly focused on the end goal of maintaining long-term sobriety, it can be easy to overlook all of your accomplishments. Staying sober consists of small acts and decisions that contribute towards the big picture which often go unnoticed or unacknowledged.
Take some time to sit down and think about where you use to be and then where you are now. Write down all of the changes you’ve made that have been for the better and how it has contributed to your progress. You’ll see that you have accomplished more than you have given yourself credit for.
#2 Talk to Your Therapist or a Loved One
When you feel like giving up, having a support system will help you stay focused and remind you why you started this journey. Your therapist is there to help you talk through any negative feelings you may be experiencing during your recovery process. Therapists can help you address why you are feeling hopeless and figure out the next steps towards getting you back on track.
Your loved ones, whether family members or friends, may have been with you when you were using drugs or alcohol and are still with you in recovery. When you are feeling down, loved ones can help remind you of how far you have come. Friends and family can offer a sense of encouragement and support to remember you are not in this fight alone.
#3 Set Micro-Goals
The saying “take it one day at a time” is something that truly applies to addiction recovery. Setting micro-goals can mean simply having small tasks for each day or week rather than focusing on the big picture at one time. This also helps you stay present and mindful of the current moment you are in.
Setting simple goals such as making sure you commit an hour to exercise or making sure you journal each day in the morning. Small daily or weekly goals help you feel less overwhelmed and avoid the feeling that you should be further along in your recovery than you are.
#4 Try New Approaches to Your Goals
Sometimes you need to try approaching your goals in new ways. Maybe you are losing hope because you are trying things that aren’t conducive to your recovery goals. It may be time to examine your actions and consider trying a new approach. Talk to your mental health professional about incorporating new approaches into your treatment plan.
Maybe it is time to explore holistic treatments such as acupuncture or yoga therapy. Talk to your provider about whether you need adjustments to your medications and be sure that your therapist fits with your needs. Whatever it is, don’t be afraid to re-evaluate your treatment plan and incorporate new practices into your process.
#5 Practice Self-care
Recovery and staying sober is hard work mentally, physically and emotionally. Being kind to yourself and taking time out of your day that is strictly dedicated to refueling your energy is crucial to maintaining long-term sobriety. It is easy to lose hope and want to give up when you feel exhausted. Learn to listen to your body and acknowledge when it needs a little extra care and tending to.
Mental self-care can be things such as taking time to write down all of the thoughts floating in your head. Try reading books that help you maintain a positive outlook on life and about yourself. Meditating and having quiet time to yourself can help with recovering from sensory overload which can contribute to mental exhaustion and anxiety.
#6 Have Patience With Yourself
The best thing you can do to help you maintain hope is to have patience with yourself. Understand that this journey is not a race, but a marathon. Staying sober is a lifelong process, that will be filled with many ups and downs. Don’t compare your progress to others who are further along in their journey than you are.
Find inspiration in others’ accomplishments. Let the success stories of others remind you that what you are working for is achievable. The best things in life often take time and require having the will to not give up on yourself to obtain them.
Cliffside Malibu specializes in addiction recovery and navigating you through your process of recovery. Traditional and holistic treatment options are available that allow you to create a treatment plan that works best for you. It is never too late to turn your life around and find the peace that drugs and alcohol stole from you. Your life does not have to be defined by what mistakes you made in your past. If you or a loved one are ready to get started on your road to sobriety, call Cliffside Malibu today at (855) 403.5641. Find out how different treatment options can benefit you. Cliffside Malibu is ready to become a part of your support system and help you achieve your goals toward recovery.