As you progress in recovery from substance use disorder (SUD), you may feel isolated and lonely. Loneliness may have been an emotion that drove you to use substances in the first place. Alternatively, it may be a new experience for you if you’ve recently had to distance yourself from a social circle that doesn’t support your sobriety. Fortunately, there are things you can do to overcome loneliness in recovery. Since some of these techniques take time, patience and optimism are key.
Create a Support Network to Overcome Loneliness
Building authentic relationships can be a long process. Fortunately, addiction treatment is a great place to create a support network. At Dream Recovery, you will be surrounded by peers who understand what you’re going through. The journey of recovery involves many challenges, which encourages people to seek support from one another. This can be helpful for bonding.
Dream Recovery is firm in our belief in the strength of community and peer support. We provide people in recovery with an environment in which they can connect with like-minded peers who understand what it’s like for them to recover. By attending group therapy sessions and other community activities, our clients can build meaningful connections with others on a similar path. Many of our clients choose to maintain these supportive friendships after treatment.
While building new connections during recovery is crucial, you can also use recovery to strengthen older ties. If your relationships with loved ones have become strained, consider family therapy. You can also make an effort to stay in contact by scheduling phone calls and meet-ups with friends and family members whenever possible.
Volunteer to Overcome Loneliness
Another way to connect with people and overcome loneliness is through volunteering and participating in other charitable or community events. It allows you to connect with other volunteers and those in your community. If you participate in events you care about, you can connect with others who share your interests and passions.
Volunteering also provides a sense of purpose and fulfillment, which may reduce feelings of loneliness. This can be a powerful tool for fostering a sense of connection during addiction recovery.
If you’re interested in volunteering, consider reaching out to local organizations or charities. See if there are any opportunities that align with your interests and goals. It may be time-consuming to volunteer regularly, but it is well worth the results you can receive from interacting with others and making a lasting difference.
Building new relationships or mending old ones can take a great deal of time. To overcome your loneliness in the meantime, engage in regular self-care.
While you may be sick of hearing about the importance of self-care, it is recommended for a reason. Adequate self-care increases your well-being in the foundational aspects of life. Getting enough restful sleep, eating healthily, and engaging in regular physical activity can do wonders for your mental health. By prioritizing your health during this time, you will better equip yourself to handle difficult emotions, including feelings of isolation or loneliness.
Engaging in enjoyable activities that bring you pleasure can help you make the most of your solitary time. They can give you a sense of purpose, satisfaction, and identity. These practices may include reading, hiking, painting, surfing, playing instruments, cooking, or caring for a pet. Setting time aside to do activities that bring you joy is an essential aspect of self-care.
Self-care practices can also prepare you to thrive in relationships. After all, they reinforce the fact that you are worthy of care and love. When you remember that, you can go into the world with more confidence and peace in who you are. These traits attract people who will treat you with the kindness and respect you deserve.
Utilize Meditation and Yoga
Meditation and yoga can provide useful ways of staying grounded when you feel frustrated or discouraged. That is because they redirect your attention to the present moment. They teach you to be content with your current situation. When you are alone, these practices can help you overcome loneliness by helping you feel fulfilled in your solitude.
Address Underlying Mental Health Conditions
Even when you have many connections with others, you may still struggle with loneliness. This could be because mental health conditions are preventing you from being able to fully engage in your relationships. That is why recognizing and treating any co-occurring mental health conditions is essential if you want to overcome loneliness in recovery.
Conditions like depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other disorders can make you not feel well enough to socialize. When you do spend time with others, they can continue to cause disconnection. Many of these disorders can increase behaviors and feelings of isolation, which is not helpful when you are struggling to overcome loneliness.
Fortunately, Dream Recovery offers comprehensive mental health services. They are designed to assist individuals in treating any underlying mental conditions they might be facing. Our team of licensed therapists and mental health experts offers tailored care and support. While our main focus is on treating SUD, we are happy to help you overcome any co-occurring disorders that are impacting your recovery.
Overcome Loneliness with Dream Recovery
It can be difficult to make friends that are willing to engage in sober activities with you during your recovery. Utilizing your peers at Dream Recovery can be a great start to help establish these social connections and avoid self-isolation. Reducing loneliness during recovery is an ongoing journey and requires you to expand your social skills. By reaching out for support, addressing mental health concerns, and practicing self-care techniques, you can overcome loneliness and create a fulfilling life in recovery.
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction and feeling lonely in recovery, know that you are not alone. While you may often feel alone through this journey, there are others in the same boat as you who also need a form of social support. Start building a supportive community of peers and family members who can help you on your journey toward long-term recovery. Self-isolation can quickly develop and can hurt your recovery. Learn how overcoming loneliness can keep you on track and help you feel supported in your new sober life. To learn more about overcoming feelings of loneliness, reach out to Dream Recovery today at (657) 216-7218.