Please accept our gratitude for helping my family, most importantly of all for helping my sister."
Recovering From Alcoholism – Strategies For Your New Life
All across the UK, there are thousands of people recovering from alcoholism. That is the good news. The bad news is that some of them will relapse within one year of completing a formal treatment programme. As an organisation dedicated to helping alcoholics and their families overcome, we hate to see that happen. The alcoholic who relapses has a much longer and harder road ahead if he or she ever hopes to recover permanently.
The risk of relapse is one of the primary reasons we encourage clients to take advantage of aftercare services that will enable them to develop strategies for living a new life without alcohol. Aftercare is so critical. Thankfully, most of the private rehab clinics we work with offer aftercare services as part of their treatment packages. Those that do not still provide a list of aftercare services that clients can utilise by themselves.
Are you recovering from alcoholism? If so, here are five strategies you can adopt for your new life without alcohol:
1. Join a Support Group
Support groups have been the subject of many jokes over the decades. That's unfortunate. Why? Because group support is a very effective way of helping recovering alcoholics avoid relapse. Group support is based on the time-tested principle of strength in numbers.
To understand the effectiveness of group support, think back to what it was like when you were a young person in school. How did it feel to be the only one left out when all of your friends got together to do something? On the other hand, how good did it feel to be part of a group of friends among whom you knew you were always welcome? The same things hold true in alcohol recovery. Former alcoholics who participate in local support groups tend to do much better than those who do not.
2. Build a Strong Support System
It is very helpful for a person recovering from alcoholism to establish a strong support system that is available outside of the local support group. As helpful as support group participation is, group meetings are only held on a limited basis. You might need help in the middle of the night after undergoing a particularly stressful life event – when no meeting is taking place. You will need someone you can talk to at a moment’s notice.
Family members can be an effective part of the recovering alcoholic's support system. They may need to undergo counselling themselves, so that is something that should always be considered during the formal treatment process. Friends and co-workers can assist with the support system if they are willing to pitch in.
3. Adopt a Healthy Lifestyle
It is interesting to observe someone suffering from alcoholism from a healthy living standpoint. Alcoholics tend to eat poorly, pay little attention to personal appearance or basic hygiene, and make no effort to exercise. A person in recovery can change that.
It has been shown that some recovering alcoholics do much better when they adopt a healthy lifestyle as a part of their overall recovery programme. This may start with a structured exercise routine while in residential rehab. It might also include learning about nutrition, developing a healthy diet, and creating strategies that will result in better hygiene and personal appearance.
4. Learn Strong Life Skills
Recovering from alcoholism doesn't stop once a person leaves a residential clinic. In fact, it has just begun. Those in recovery must re-adapt to normal life in a way that allows them to be productive members of society without returning to the kinds of behaviours that enabled their alcoholism. To do this, it's helpful to learn certain life skills.
For example, how do you cope with stress? The alcoholic copes by drinking. It goes without saying that drinking will not be an option for you if you are recovering from alcoholism. You will need another way to cope with stressful situations. You can learn some very effective strategies from your therapists and counsellors in rehab; others can be learned from the members of your local support group.
5. Give Back to Others
One of the best strategies you can adopt is one that does not get talked about very often: giving back to others in the same position. In other words, you have already been through detox and rehab. You have a particular body of knowledge that you can share with others just beginning their recovery. You can lend a listening ear, answer questions, and even provide a bit of sound advice based on your experience.
We should note that local alcohol support groups are often populated by former alcoholics who have completed their recovery but have chosen to stick around in order to help new members coming into the group. The support they provide is invaluable. A person recovering from alcoholism can benefit tremendously from the compassion and knowledge of others who have already been through the same things.
We Are Here to Help
We have offered you five different strategies that you can implement for your new life without alcohol. But before you can adopt them, you must first undergo professional treatment through a private clinic or other service provider. None of the strategies will be of any value to you if you are not willing to undergo detox and rehabilitative counselling.
If you are attempting to recover from alcoholism without first going through formal treatment, we want to help you. No, we do not provide professional treatment ourselves, but we can connect you with those who do. Part of our mission is to compile and maintain a database of private rehab clinics offering alcohol recovery services in your local area. We also have information about NHS programmes, private counselling opportunities, alcohol charities, and so forth.
Recovering from alcoholism requires professional treatment followed by adopting the strategies we have listed here. We hope you will make the decision to do so. Your future, and that of your family, may very well depend on it.
- Why Do Alcoholics Drink – The Science Behind Addiction
- The Difference Between Heavy Drinking and Alcohol Abuse
- What Makes Alcohol Abuse A Gate-Way To Alcoholism?
- What Alcohol Advice Can You Get For Free in the UK?
- Am I an Alcoholic? The Sooner You Know the Better!
- Social Problems Associated With Alcohol Abuse
- How To Spot Functioning Alcoholic – The Tell-Tail Signs
- Dangers and Risks of Alcohol – The Facts You Should Know
Daniel’s guidance, professional and very heartfelt approach gave us the confidence and determination to go through with it."
- Free advice from a trained alcohol counsellor
- Access the best treatments in the UK and around the world
- Care for the alcoholic AND their family