Setting Goals in Recovery – It is both important and natural to begin setting some goals for ourselves when we get into recovery. I know from my own experience that it was probably the first day that I began looking ahead to what life might have in store for me now that I am getting sober. However, it is of the utmost importance that we be careful about the kinds of goals we set for ourselves and the way we envision these goals.
A realistic goal is written down. Unless you put it in writing, it is just an idea, it is something you may or may not get around to. Recovery experts make it clear to write down your goals and go over them with someone who has more experience in recovery than you. This way they are concrete and you do not make the mistake of being to general or specific. You want to set manageable goals that you can clarify in writing.
Create A Plan – Take Action
If you do not have an action plan, it is not a goal. Once you start to set goals in recovery, begin working out a plan for how this is going to get achieved. For example, I had things that needed to be accomplished and things I wanted to accomplish. I had to catch up on some financial issues that I had let slide. I also wanted to get involved in music. In the first case, I set out a realistic budget whereby I could begin catching up on money I owed. With the second, I started reaching out to local music organizations and looked up their meeting schedules and events. In both cases, I wrote down the goal and set out a plan of action. I have since achieved both of these things and more.
In setting goals we also need to avoid certain traps. Do not set goals which depend on other people to reach. An example of this could be found in my goal to pay back money. While my job made this possible, I did not set this goal with the belief that I would be making more money because my employer gave me a raise. I may get a raise, but I cannot make plans and set goals based on this possibility. Make sure your goals are based on the things you control and not on the outcomes from other people.
Setting Goals In Recovery That Are Realistic
Do not set goals that are too big. This is obvious, but any of us can fall into this trap. The goal to save some money over the course of your first year of recovery is reasonable. The goal to be a homeowner may be out of reach. Look at what can really be achieved and set your goals accordingly.
Getting sober is full of opportunity. The world can open up to us as sober people once we begin the process of recovery. Setting goals is a great way to foster your recovery and to give you incentive to keep going when life is dull or difficult. We just need to take steps and precautions to make sure our recovery goals are manageable and realistic.
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