I can’t stress enough how important I believe it is to stay as healthy as possible, especially in recovery. We are holistic beings, which means that every little thing we do has some kind of consequence and effect on something else. Whether it’s a food we eat, a thought we think, or an action we take, we are shaping our lives with our own decisions. I like to think of my health in recovery on the same points of the AA triangle as Unity, Service and Recovery. To stay connected to my Higher Power, I need to keep my mind, body and soul healthy and up to speed with the current moment.
To keep my mind and soul healthy, I make it a point to stay in the present moment as much as possible. I go to meetings daily, read the 12 Step literature and other spiritual texts, and I stay in close contact with my Sponsor and other friends in the program. I pray to my Higher Power, A LOT. I consistently ask for guidance from God and from older, wiser people who have been sober longer than I have.
In my opinion, keeping my body healthy is just as important as keeping my mind and heart happy. If I’m distracted with aches, pains and sickness, it can be even more challenging to stay in the present moment and be patient and tolerant with my fellows. I personally practice Yoga, exercise, and eat a diet of mostly vegetables and grains. Although I do treat myself with chocolate sometimes!
It’s beneficial to remember that everything is better in moderation! Our alcoholic and addict minds can tend to want to overdo anything that feels good, whether it?s food or sex or alcohol or crack or TV. But in recovery finding middle ground is necessary to not only maintain our emotional sobriety, but also to have more fun being sober!
I don’t do this perfectly. Sometimes I feel upset and eat too much chocolate, or I obsess over a guy I’m dating. Like mostly everything in recovery, this is progress not perfection. We are only human, and it takes time to retrain ourselves from the indulgence of addiction into a more peaceful way of living.
What I have to keep myself on track is as structured of a schedule as I can manage. My work schedule does shift around sometimes, but I have a list of things that I must do every day. They are actions that are non-negotiable because they keep all three aspects of myself healthy and fully functioning.
Things like going to a meeting every day, calling my Sponsor several times a week, journaling for my 12 Step work, being of service at least one hour a week, and spending quiet time alone in nature.
As you continue on in your recovery, you will find the things that you must do every day to stay serene. A serene mind is a clear mind, and we need all the clarity we can get to stay present and able to be of service to those around us.
Don’t forget that what we consume through all of our senses effects how we feel and what we think. So listening to uplifting music, talking to positive people, eating fresh food, reading inspirational literature and taking time to take good care of ourselves will have a positive impact. We are holistic beings as I’ve said before. It might seem like eating a carton of ice cream or watching a violent movie with lots of glorification of drug use in it won?t have much of an effect, but it does.
I like to remind myself that the Universe, God, Higher Power, whatever you want to call it, has merely lent us these bodies and minds to take care of the best we can with the little time that we do have. It’s our responsibility (and it can be our joy) to watch over ourselves as we would watch over precious children.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.