When pursuing a goal as monumental as lifelong sobriety, you should never have to feel like you’re facing your challenges alone. Fortunately, plenty of people have been where you are and emerged on the other side. A group of sober peers can provide much-needed perspective and emotional support. Having these supporters in your corner will be invaluable as you enter a new chapter of your life. What are some significant advantages of peer support in addiction recovery?
Encouragement to Stay Clean
Learning how to manage an addiction is not easy. There will be days where you feel triggered by stress, anger and loneliness. At times, you may question whether all your hard work has been worth it. During these low points, when a relapse to drug and alcohol use seems inevitable, having someone to call can make a world of difference.
Talking with someone who has been through the same challenges as you have will reinforce your desire to stay on the right path. You can also draw inspiration from your peer supporters’ stories of how they persevered under similar circumstances.
Making New Friends
It can be hard to make new friends as an adult, especially when you don’t have the crutch of alcohol or drugs to lower your inhibitions and instill a false sense of confidence. Many recovering addicts find that their only “friendships” revolved around drinking or using, and that those relationships don’t hold up once that shared interest is out of the picture.
Your peer support group will replace those negative influences with positive ones. They’ll encourage you to chase your dreams because they’ve experienced the joys of sobriety and want to help you get to a better place in your life.
Intense guilt and shame often accompany the recovery process, especially in its earliest phases. You’ll now have to learn how to work through emotions you previously swept under the rug with the oblivion of drinking and drug use. Trying to keep things bottled up inside can be detrimental to your mental health. In your peer support group, you’ll have a judgment-free zone where you can feel free to explore your past and present feelings without fear that anyone will belittle or think less of you.
Where to Find Your Peer Support Group
Isolation is a common characteristic of addiction. As drugs or alcohol began to play a larger and larger role in your life, you might have pushed away caring friends and family members who expressed concerns about your well-being, eventually leaving you with no meaningful relationships. You might now be unsure of where to find sober supporters without the influence of intoxicating substances. Here are a few suggestions.
- Group meetings: Recovery-minded groups such as AA and NA are free to join, and they have helped thousands of people maintain sobriety. You’ll meet plenty of people in various stages of the recovery journey, allowing you to find a diverse range of supporters.
- Sober meetups: If you’re worried that attending social events will feel awkward without a beer in your hand, or that it will be hard to make new friends who understand your goals, Austin has plenty of sober meetup groups for you to choose from.
- Volunteerism: Volunteering is both an excellent way to support a cause that’s important to you and an opportunity to connect with like-minded people. It also helps you feel a profound sense of belonging to your community by allowing you to contribute to something you believe in.
High-Accountability Sober Living to Help You Achieve More
A sober living facility is another excellent way to meet the people who will eventually form the backbone of your peer support network. When you transition from inpatient addiction treatment, immediately returning to the “real world” might represent too much of a threat to your hard-won sobriety. Contact us today at Segue Recovery Support to learn more about this valuable component of your aftercare plan.