Struggling with drug and alcohol addiction is quite the challenge. The first step in your recovery process is deciding you are ready to change your life. Once you’ve made that choice, the next step is to set realistic goals for how to make your sobriety a lifelong reality. Let’s get you one step closer to that reality by exploring the importance of setting goals in addiction recovery.
Tip #1: Make a list of addiction recovery goals
What are your specific goals in addiction treatment as well as once you’re out of treatment? You may approach this goal setting initiative by thinking you want to be stronger, be happier and/or learn how to manage your mental health. Those sentiments are great to begin with, but dig deeper. Be more specific.
Consider goals such as:
- improving how you manage your mental health
- talking to your doctor about how to improve your physical health
- finding support groups and resources to help you detox your relationships with people who use drugs or alcohol
- talking to a mental health professional to learn more about what led you to substance abuse
- reaching out to a family member or friend you lost touch with during your addiction
- overcoming personal issues such as employment, housing or legal challenges
Use the idea of smart goals – or S.M.A.R.T. goals :
- S – Set specific goals
- M – Set measurable goals
- A – Set attainable goals
- R – Set relevant goals
- T – Set timely goals
Tip #2: Prioritize your addiction recovery goals
Setting goals in addiction recovery is about more than maintaining sobriety. That is of course essential to the success of your recovery journey, but achieving your goals as you make it through that journey is crucial as well.
Take your list of goals and put them in order of importance to you and your sobriety. Have you included:
- how you will tend to your mental health?
- where treatment programs are and when you can seek or return to treatment?
- how you will pay for your your basic needs and health care?
Focus on reaching those goals first. Then, add on goals as you can handle them. It’s not a race; it’s a marathon. You’ve got a lifetime of sobriety ahead of you, and prioritizing your goals will help you secure long-term recovery success.
Tip #3: Celebrate your recovery milestones
As you move along in your recovery journey, remember to take the time to pat yourself on the back when you achieve a goal.
Maybe you started a new job or found a new therapist you like. Or maybe you replaced a group of friends who were holding you back with new coworkers who support your recovery from addiction. Whatever you achieve, celebrate it! It will help to give you purpose as well as inspire you to keep making meaningful change to your life.
Tip #4: Focus on flexibility and accountability
Inevitably, we all make mistakes. Maybe we lose motivation one day. Or maybe we set goals that are too high and have to adjust our strategies and timelines for meeting them. Remember that your recovery process is personal and not set in stone. Celebrate your milestones AND own your mistakes. Grant yourself the flexibility to revamp and begin again.
Part of recovery is adopting new habits that suit lifelong sobriety. Along the way to establishing those new habits, you may run into situations, people or places that challenge your goals. Do your best, regroup as needed, lean on your support group who can help you maintain accountability and move forward.
You may feel like you’re taking steps backward, but each step that teaches you a lesson is a step forward.
We can help you
At The Blackberry Center, you will have the opportunity to begin the journey to lifelong recovery in our state-of-the-art facilities. We know the power setting goals in addiction recovery brings to your lifelong sobriety, and we are here to help you bring those goals to fruition.
If you or one of your loved ones is struggling with addiction, we can help. We use a personalized approach to addiction treatment. Our focus is on treating the disease, not the symptoms. We put our patients first every step of the way.
Our substance abuse-only treatment programs include detox, residential and partial hospitalization program. Our on-site rehab programs focus on a comprehensive recovery approach. They address your physical, mental and spiritual needs for optimal wellness. Your needs are unique. We treat you as such.
Reach out for recovery help today
You may be struggling with long-term addiction. Or you may be fighting strong temptations. We can meet you where you are in your fight for sobriety.
We welcome you to our treatment center. From support groups to individual therapy treatment options, we are here to fight the battle with you.
Reach out to us online today. You can also call us at 888-512-9802.
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Susan Gail Taylor is a content creator focusing on the addiction, health, fitness and mental health arenas. She earned a Master of Arts degree as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Professional and Technical Writing and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. She is passionate about animals, whole food plant-based nutrition, fitness and creating valuable content with featuring actionable steps. In her free time, Susan enjoys life and adventures with her husband Nathan and their two dogs Tallon and Kane. She also dedicates time to running, yoga, hiking and biking.