Your completion of rehab should only be considered the beginning of your journey towards complete recovery. The biggest danger you face once rehab is completed is a relapse, or a return to using drugs. This happens to many former addicts for various reasons, but there are a number of steps which will assist you in avoiding relapses.
Reduce Your Stress Levels
This is easier said than done, but is crucial to preventing relapse. Many people begin using drugs precisely because it helps them escape from stressful life situations. While avoiding stressful situations is not realistic, there are a number of things you can do to build up your resilience to these events, so they don’t affect you in ways which make it tempting to resume using drugs. To build up a greater resistance to stress, start performing activities such as exercising, meditation, massages, walks, and give yourself plenty of rest and relaxation from work.
Choose Your Associates Carefully
One of the key reasons why many former addicts relapse is because after completing rehab, they resume associating with people that use drugs. This creates situations where the former addict is pressured into resuming usage, and if they happen to be under a lot of stress when this happens, the likelihood of them relapsing is extremely high.
Rehab does you no good if you’re not careful about the people you associate with once your treatment is completed. If your friends, acquaintances or even family members continue using drugs around you after you’ve completed rehab, sever all ties with them until they stop. If possible, seek out a mentor, particularly a former addict who has succeeded. They will understand your situation, and can help and inspire you to achieve your own goals.
The food you eat during recovery is extremely important. A lot of people don’t realize this, but the foods they eat will influence their mood, health and sleeping patterns. Some addicts’ successfully complete rehab, only to switch to a diet rich in junk food as an alternative to the drugs they consumed previously. This is a pyrrhic victory which ultimately results in obesity and poor health. Reduce the amount of junk or fast food in your diet, and focus instead on eating more fruits and vegetables.
Set Goals for Yourself
To maintain your lifelong commitment to quit using drugs, set goals for yourself which are realistic and worthwhile. Completing these goals will build your confidence, and will give your life new meaning. These goals should be positive, and can involve things such as finding new employment, acquiring new skills, getting into shape, or setting financial benchmarks.
As long as you have something meaningful to keep your occupied, this will reduce the chances of resuming drug usage. A lot of people begin using drugs because they are not goal oriented and have no direction in life. Once you have a goal, a truly desire to achieve it, you will be more resilient to anything which will take you away from it.