“Humans are creatures of habit,” if the old adage is to be believed. Even the most absolutely spontaneous people still maintain relatively consistent bedtimes, morning routines, and daily rituals. These routines help to organize not only each passing day but all of the shooting thoughts that pass through our minds. For people suffering from anxiety and depression, keeping things as scheduled as possible can be invaluable in mitigating surprises and stress. On the other hand, this defense mechanism can also be one of the things that is most at fault for feelings of being trapped.
Creating precise schedules drawn out across every little thing creates a very rigid structure. It prevents anything else from getting in but also prevents the individual from looking forward to anything. What begins as a defense mechanism can quickly spiral into a deliberate feeling of apathy. Each day becomes repetitive and monotonous, making it very easy for anyone suffering from anxiety or depression to become detached. This routine can also sap a person’s motivation to change, making it impossible to overcome this apathy. These walls and schedules have been refined inside peoples’ minds again and again, so breaking these routines and rituals will take time.
Breaking out of these routines does not necessarily mean changing the schedule entirely or eliminating daily rituals outright. It can be as simple as allowing yourself to sleep in longer than usual without worry. Perhaps you can purposely leave an empty spot in your daily schedule and wait for something to come up organically. You may use this time to watch a movie, play a video game, or go on a walk. It doesn’t have to be anything grand or time-consuming. Becoming open to experiencing a single unique moment, however uncomplicated, prepares the mind for change and spontaneity. Thus begins the path to escaping daily apathy.
Success should always be celebrated, and this is no different. No part of shifting one’s routine, especially when it is in place as a defensive mechanism, is going to be easy. As such, tangible rewards can help the process along. This step, however, pulls double duty by forcing the person to look outward. Rewarding a person for trying new things, however small, reinforces their desires to get out of their routine. At the same time, it introduces another layer of change, safely and positively.
At Alta Loma Transformational Living, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms. Alta Loma uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, where you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan. We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit, so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at (886)457-3843.