4 Unexpected Life Benefits of Becoming Sober

4 Unexpected Life Benefits of Becoming Sober

Getting sober from steroids is difficult, but that does not mean that recovery is all work and no play. In fact, living free of the chaos and destruction of addiction makes it possible to live dynamically with purpose, joy and peace. Unexpected benefits abound when you quit drugs, so, to learn about four specific perks you can expect from steroid addiction recovery, read on.

Payoff #1: Having More Fun

People who abuse drugs to feel better about themselves or to fit in with a crowd often believe they cannot feel “normal” without those drugs; this fact is particularly true of people who are psychologically dependent upon drugs to numb negative feelings such as anxiety, inferiority or depression. However, like taping a Band-Aid over a dirty wound, substance abuse only covers up problems and ultimately makes them worse. The key to healing from pain is to face the issues that underpin drug use, especially emotional and mental health problems.

Treatment at professional rehab centers focuses on intensive therapy that heals core wounds. With expert help, many individuals gain self-awareness and insight into their past and patterns of abuse, and these realizations allow people to feel more at ease with themselves. Many programs even provide opportunities for personal exploration through recreation, such as art and equine therapy, treatment that incorporates caring for horses into counseling. Once rehab ends, most people continue to round out their daily experiences by connecting with sober friends. Although some people may think of a social life as nonessential, experts believe that human connection can powerfully prevent relapse. Moreover, a study supported by the American Psychological Association shows that people with a variety of coping strategies stay abstinent for longer, so there is no need to neglect the help of others[1].

Payoff #2: A Chance to Rewind Time and Extend Your Life

Health and recovery go hand-in-hand, but staying stuck in the downward spiral of addiction takes a major toll on health. For example, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, from 2006 to 2010, excessive alcohol use killed approximately 88,000 Americans and wasted 2.5 million years of potential life each year. In other words, drug abuse can shorten the life of a user by an average of 30 years[2]. Other health problems that drug addicts are more likely to suffer from include sexually transmitted diseases—such as HIV/AIDS—liver problems, brain damage and death. However, by dedicating yourself to a sober life, you can not only protect your health, but also reverse many of the health problems caused by addiction. However, some conditions (such as hypertension, heart disease, anemia, malnutrition and a host of mental health issues) clear up once someone stops using drugs and commits to making healthy lifestyle changes.

Payoff #3: Friends You Can Count On

Many people become isolated during periods of active addiction. One benefit of getting sober is learning to connect to others, but this perk extends far beyond feel-good emotions and improved social lives. Data amassed by the National Institute on Drug Abuse states that feeling supported and accepted by friends, family members, recovery experts and support-group members means recovering addicts are less likely to relapse[3]. Physicians at the Mayo Clinic say that it is easy to understand why this lifestyle change packs such a powerful and curative punch[4]. Support groups—a form of community that recovering addicts can easily find—help individuals feel less lonely, isolated and judged. Sharing struggles with people who have walked the same road through recovery empowers addicts to manage stress more effectively while also boosting their optimism and resilience.

Payoff #4: Discovering What You Love

Addiction is a time-consuming disease. Many addicts spend their time planning how to finance and acquire the next fix, so learning to manage time is a common challenge of early sobriety. In other words, recovering addicts suddenly find themselves with too much time on their hands, so, to stay sober and avoid relapse, experts suggest rediscovering and developing new hobbies, especially hobbies that connect you with other people. Rather than simply being a way to occupy time, experts at Psychology Today say that hobbies also cultivate the capacity to share experiences, unique thoughts and meaningful interactions with the world at large.

Hobbies also provide a safeguard against boredom, a known relapse trigger. It is unrealistic to expect every day to be exciting and packed with thrills; nevertheless, if too many days blur to create a pattern of monotony, then recovery could grow shaky. A boring life in sobriety may seem unappealing, which will lead you to romanticize your days of drug and alcohol abuse. If you stay in this state of mind for too long, then you could slide quickly into relapse. In response, add zest to your life by rediscovering activities that awaken your curiosity, passion and intellect. Consider your past, especially seasons of life in which you felt you enlivened. Mine your memories for clues as to what might put pep in your step today. For instance, if you loved sports in high school, then consider joining a biking team; if you used to be a bookworm, then find a discussion group to join at your local library. The idea is to substitute substance abuse for something that provides the solution you truly seek: joy, balance and a chance to become your best self.

Treatment for Steroid Addiction

If you or a loved one suffers from steroid addiction, then know that we can help. Admissions coordinators are available at our toll-free, 24 hour helpline to guide you to wellness and affordable solutions. You can live without drugs and alcohol, so please call today to take the first step toward health.


 

[1] Retrieved from http://www.apa.org

[2] Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/fact-sheets/alcohol-use.htm

[3] Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov

[4] Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/