It’s been said that a friend is a gift we give ourselves.
Before seeking treatment, your past support system may have been quite unhealthy. You likely spent time with individuals who encouraged your substance use, and felt more comfortable being around people who didn’t necessarily want you to seek out sobriety. Developing new friendships in recovery can be challenging, but the rewards are worth the effort. The key is to surround yourself with the right people.
Build a New Circle
The relationships we build can be tricky, and many people don’t realize the significant impact that these connections can have on our own actions, beliefs, and attitudes. If you’re currently seeking treatment or considering it, it’s time to think about expanding your support system to include people who will uplift you in recovery – because those are the people you want to surround yourself with.
Making friends can be a bit nerve-wracking, especially in addiction recovery. Each person has gone through their own set of trials and tribulations. Some may feel embarrassed or ashamed of the hurt they’ve caused themselves and/or others in the past.
For those who are introverted by nature or have a difficult time expressing themselves, the group focus of most recovery programs can be intimidating. If you enter recovery with your guard up, it will take longer to break those walls down. But having a circle of friends that you can share with and confide in is a vital part of successful recovery.
You’re All in This Together
The main point to remember here is that everyone in treatment is there to get better – to improve their lives, to develop healthier coping mechanisms, and to seek out a path of living that is better for their mental, physical and spiritual well-being. Judgment has absolutely no place in treatment.
Each person’s story is different. Being vulnerable enough to share yours and open enough to listen to the stories of others is what matters most. If you’re ready to make new friends in sobriety, consider the following tips:
- Communication is key. Practice expressing yourself respectfully while also listening to what the other person is saying about their own life.
- Try to avoid “you” statements. Each person is on a different path and they have to discover what’s best for them.
- Make small efforts to open up over time. People are like onions – they have layers that must be revealed as time goes on and more trust is gained.
Help is Waiting
A well-known African proverb says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” The friendships you make in treatment can help you go further than you ever imagined.
If you’re ready to start your recovery, speak with a professional from Alta Loma today.
At Alta Loma, we understand the importance of community in recovery. We help residents regain their self-esteem, improve their social skills, and build confidence in their ability to live a sober life after treatment. We are ready for you to join us. Call (866) 457-3843 today to get started.