Three Things We Wish We Had Known When Leaving Recovery 

During recovery, we are told that we are going to develop specific tools that we can rely on to help ourselves feel better. We are told that we are going to learn how to take care of ourselves, learn how our mental illnesses work, and how we can operate with them.

We are told that we are going to be okay and that our challenges will pass. We are shown a schedule and a plan that is laid out for us to know what we can expect.

The work we are going to have to put into ourselves to reach that better place is plainly laid out for us. There are things they’ll tell us about what happens once we leave our treatment program.

We have this image painted for us about going out into the world, free of the burden of our illness, more energetic, and able to take on any challenge that comes our way. It is this idea that we are working towards as we encounter our deepest, darkest demons and try to overcome them.

It is what we are fighting for and what we want more than anything. But even with all of these promises that are made to us, actually leaving recovery is something you can’t really be prepared for.

It can be a shocking change for us to enter back into the world without the support of the program. There are things that many of us who have left treatment wish we had been told. Here are some of the things we wish we were told when we first left recovery. 

Things Change

 Getting back into our normal lives after we have gone through recovery can be difficult because so much has changed since we first entered it. The world is different, the people around us are different, and we are different.

That doesn’t always mesh with what we have to go back to. Our initial response is to panic and stress about it, but we have to accept the way things are. It is the way it is, and we can’t push back against it.

That isn’t going to change anything about our circumstances. Instead, opening our minds and our arms to the change can make the transition all the more easy. We can’t stop the world from changing, and we shouldn’t stop ourselves from doing the same.

Let the changes come and go with the flow of life. In time, it can lead to bigger and brighter things for all of us. 

There is Fear

 You can’t just leave your program, and suddenly expect everything to be better. We have more confidence, and we are indeed stronger than we were before we went through recovery, but that does not mean we are immune to fear.

It is a scary thing to face the world after recovery. We no longer have the safety and comfort of our therapy sessions, our appointments, and a daily schedule. We now have to function without all those things, and that can be hard to do.

This fear is okay, and things will be worked out. You are entirely equipped to figure it out. Lean on what you learned in recovery, lean on the people around you, and figure out what you need to do to live your life.

Don’t resist being afraid and let your fear run its course. Fear is okay, and you should not be ashamed of it.

There is No Plan

 There is no rubric for these things. There is not an instructional booklet for you to follow like a Lego set; you have to figure this out on your own.

Don’t panic if you don’t know what you are doing, none of us have it all figured out! Life after recovery is entirely unpredictable and overwhelming.

But you are going to be okay. You have to tools you need to succeed. You are stronger than you were before, so trust yourself and know that you will be okay. 

Life after recovery isn’t a science, and there are so many things to figure out. Be accepting of that uncertainty, embrace the change, the fear, and the fact that you don’t know what’s going to happen.

Instead, celebrate that you are better, that you are okay, and that you are the best you that you ever have been. Life is always going to be uncertain, and that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. 

If you, or anyone you know, is struggling with anxiety or mental illness, do not hesitate to contact the team here at True Recovery. Our program, founded in 2014, is built around finding what’s best for you to overcome your addiction. Our facility is located in Newport Beach, California, with our supportive housing located close to our campus in Costa Mesa. Take advantage of the local beaches, nature preserves, and Orange County community while we fight for you. Contact us at (866) 399-6528 or [email protected]