If you’re determined to make your addiction recovery a success, one of the first things that you’ll have to do after completing a drug or alcohol treatment program is to stay away from the people that you drank alcohol or used drugs with.
Sadly, if these were the types of people that you spent all your time with, you’ll probably have to cut a big part of your social network out of your life.
Yes, they may have been great friendships but ask yourself this – if alcohol or drugs weren’t part of everything you did together, would it still have been that amazing?
You might miss them, but the good news is that you have an opportunity to rebuild your life with people that truly care about you, your health and your wellbeing.
In this article, I am going to tell you how to build your own support network in addiction recovery again by giving you helpful tips about making friends with the right people and how you’ll benefit from it.
Why is Having Good, Sober Friends Important in Addiction Recovery?
Having good, sober friends play a very important role in your addiction recovery. Here are some of the positive things that it offers:
- Good, sober friends will be there to support you when times are tough
- Good, sober friends will help you stay on the addiction recovery path
- Good, sober friends will also make sure that you stay entertained – without ever needing to use drugs or alcohol
How You Can Make Sober Friendships in Addiction Recovery
Most of us make friends by meeting the same group of people on a regular basis, for example, at work, at university, in your neighbourhood etc.
However, if you have difficulty in meeting up with these people again, for example, you lost your job, you dropped out of university or you moved into a new house, you have to put in a little more effort to try and create these friendships which happened naturally before.
Here are some ways on how you can make new sober friendships:
Join a Support Group
Joining a support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) will give you a good sense of direction in addiction recovery, especially in the early stages after treatment, which can be daunting for some recovering addicts.
Apart from that, support groups give you the chance to meet and communicate new people in a similar position as yourself, giving you a great opportunity to make new friends with individuals who share a common goal – addiction recovery.
Get into a Routine
Getting into a set routine everyday is another good way to make new friends.
Here’s an example: If you’ve ever travelled to work or school using public transport, you’ll find that over time that you’ll most likely begin to recognise the same faces everyday and it often gives you the opportunity to become friends with these people.
So instead of going to a new coffee shop each morning, visit the same one every day and you’ll find that you’ll become more familiar with the people around you.
Instead of Waiting on Others, Suggest Fun Things to Do!
If you’re waiting on your friends to decide on fun activities to do, why don’t you suggest one yourself?
The best friendships are the ones where everyone plays their part in the relationship, whether it be choosing a movie to go and see or even getting everyone together for a hike.
It’s important to have a good solid support network in addiction recovery as knowing that there are people that love and care about you could just be enough to help you achieve your long term sobriety goal.