Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Avoiding Major Changes In Early Sobriety

In the first year of sobriety, AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) recommends avoiding any major life changes. Many new emotions surface when you get sober, so acting on raw feelings can be dangerous. Postponing huge changes until you achieve emotional sobriety is beneficial, and lowers the chance of relapse.

There are many good reasons to avoid change in early recovery. It takes time to discover who you are and what you want after addiction. If you don't fully understand yourself, you are at risk of making impulsive decisions which leads to regret. Adding additional stress to early recovery can be overwhelming. Making big changes demands a lot of attention, so sobriety may not become your first priority. It’s important to dedicate time into recovery, and changes can rob you of precious energy.


Some things to avoid in the first year include moving homes, changing careers, getting a divorce, going on long trips, having a baby, starting a new business and starting a new romance.

Starting a new relationship is very distracting. It may be dangerous to enter a relationship with another newly sober person because both of you are particularly vulnerable.  The high can become a substitute for addiction and may lead you back to substance abuse.

It’s good advice to avoid changes in the first year of sobriety, but sometimes it can’t be avoided. It’s important to decide what is a necessary and unnecessary change. Get as much support as possible to make decisions through a sponsor or friends in recovery. You can run it by a therapist and become more involved in a fellowship. Also, pay attention to the warning signs of relapse.

Life happens on life’s terms, so change is sometimes inevitable. It’s important to understand that you’re not alone on the road to recovery. Passport to Recovery offers a number of wonderful addiction treatment programs that can help set you on the right path. Surrounding yourself with people who want you to succeed will build your confidence, and enable you to make wise decisions.
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