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Recovery Is a Full-Time Job

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Recovery Is a Full-Time Job

When we talk about our recovery journey, everyone’s story will be different, but one thing that rings true for everyone is that recovery is a process that begs our full attention. Think about it this way: you can’t be a little pregnant in the same way you can’t be a little clean or a little sober.

You either are or you aren’t. This may sound hyperbolic, but it’s true. When it comes to getting clean and sober, we have to go all in.

The first step to understanding recovery is figuring out which option is best for you. Focusing full-time on your recovery doesn’t mean you need to be in an inpatient or residential program, but it does mean you are actively working on getting clean and sober and staying that way — and that means focusing most of your time and energy into the process.

The first step is finding the right support outside of yourself and your loved ones.

Types of Recovery

  • Therapy: Working with a therapist is a great option to help with addiction and foster mental health. Most people who suffer from addiction fall into the cycle because of trauma and unresolved mental health issues. A therapist can help you work through unconscious issues in the mind/body and free yourself of the pain you’re enduring. A therapist can be a safe person for check-ins and offers multiple coping mechanisms and techniques to keep you clean, sober, and healthy.
  • Group: Outpatient facilities, churches, hospitals, and community centers all offer different types of group therapy ranging from addiction, abuse, mental health, and more. Group therapy, like AA or NA, is an excellent option for getting clean/sober and staying that way. Through a group, you’ll be able to tell your story and hear the story of others, all of which can be a powerfully healing process.
  • Intensive Outpatient (IOP): Intensive out-patient is a program that takes up half the day. These programs could look like an 8-5, a 9-3, or even a night program that allows people to retain a day job. You could work all day then head to IOP from 4:30-9:30 pm. The goal of IOP is to fill up the time outside of work or other responsibilities. You’ll learn coping mechanisms, bond with others, and work on releasing the pain and addictions cycles once and for all.
  • Inpatient/Residential: The last line of defense against addiction is an inpatient program. This type of program has you living in a facility that is helping you get clean. This could look like a hospital or a private residential program. The goal is to literally go all in so you are monitored every hour of the day to ensure you get clean, sober, and find the coping skills you need to return to the world as a new and improved person.

“Off Time”

Unless we are in an inpatient program, we will undoubtedly have “off-time” — time when you won’t be at work, school, or actively working on your mental health. This “free” time is where we need to push the hardest to lean into our recovery journey.

What are you doing during that off time? What do you do before bed? What are you doing to benefit yourself before and after work or school?

If you’re not working or going to school, what are you doing during the day? These are vital questions at the beginning of your recovery process, ones that can be answered through routine.

Some options to fill the time can consist of going to the gym, taking a walk, preparing and cooking dinner, watching something that brings comfort, or spending time with loved ones. If you are looking for work, start researching.

Make a list of daily tasks you can accomplish, and start setting goals. You can’t make changes until you start changing your behaviors.

Off time is a great topic that can be discussed in treatment. Work with your team to ensure you have routines in place and coping mechanisms ready to go.

Going All In

It doesn’t matter which path you choose, so long as you go all in. For a while, you will need to eat, sleep, and breathe recovery and everything it stands for, but this process isn’t forever.

The goal is to build a healthy routine and learn to trust yourself again in the process. You are burying an old life and creating a new one. It takes time, but before you know it, you’ll be hitting the ground running.

Even if you’ve relapsed, once you get on your feet, you can live a life where addiction is simply a part of a larger story. It just takes time, patience, and care.

The goal is to be kind to yourself. You are doing the best you can! Try a new therapist, get into IOP, or sign in to a treatment facility. No matter which you choose, remember to go all in.

Going all in means making the choice, once and for all, to change your life. This type of transition isn’t easy. If you or someone you know is struggling to get clean, sober, and healthy, reach out to Burning Tree Ranch.

We specialize in addiction and relapse and know how hard it is to consistently make the right choices for our minds, bodies, and souls. Call today to learn about our 30 and 90-day treatment options: (855) 678-5827

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LMSW, LCDC | Counselor
Kristina Robertson serves as Counselor at Burning Tree Ranch. Holding both a Bachelors and Masters Degree in Social Work, Kristina’s greatest joy is “watching our clients learn to love themselves again.” An avid equestrian, mother to twenty-one horses, and all-around animal lover, Kristina serves as a bright shining example of long-term recovery in action. Her commitment to whole person health: mental, physical, emotional and spiritual makes her an invaluable member of the Burning Tree Ranch clinical team. As a distinguished Phi Theta Kappa and Alpha Zeta member, Kristina believes deeply in each client’s pursuit of becoming their best selves.

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Beth Legacki, Burning Tree Ranch Alumni