Staying Motivated in Recovery – Staying motivated, whether we want to or not, is an important part of recovery. Staying motivated through the recovery process can be a challenge, but there are a few ways that can help you stay motivated to reach your goals. In fact, there are five basic goals that can help you stay motivated. Each will be explored below.
The first goal is to keep it simple. While looking at the big picture is great, in recovery, especially early recovery, keeping things simple is best. You are working toward a better life, but break this down into smaller manageable steps. If your goal is to become a productive citizen and need to get a job, but do not have a license to drive to a job, then start working toward that license. This may mean paying fines, studying for a test, or clearing up other issues related to the lack of a license. Start with the obvious then deal with other issues to the bigger goal.
Next, affirm yourself. This may seem silly, but you need to take the time to look back at what you have already accomplished and what goals you have met, no matter how big or small. You have taken positive steps simply by entering recovery. Do not take these for granted and celebrate them. For those who have been in recovery for any length of time, celebrate the milestones in a healthy manner. Celebrate your first week, your first month, and your first year. You have a right to be proud of what you have accomplished.
As part of affirming yourself, pre-plan celebrations. Set goals to meet and rewards for meeting these goals. The rewards should be comparable to the goals you have met. A date night with a movie for an entire week of staying on track or a party with other sober people at the one year mark may be good ideas. If you do not meet the goals then you do not get the reward, but that is not reason to give up it is a reason to keep trying until you succeed.
Next, create a support network. This support network will both offer you support and be able to celebrate your accomplishments with when they are met. This group can also offer encouragement when you are struggling or want to give up. Choose your support network wisely as they are people you will need to be totally honest with over time. They will know your secrets, your struggles, and your victories. These people will become a type of lifeline for you at times and will likely become close friends as well.
Finally, maintain structure. This may be the hardest part as it requires self-discipline. Keep a daily routine that includes recovery activities and self-care activities. You cannot meet your goals if you are not taking care of yourself. This includes eating healthy, taking time to relax, and practicing good mental hygiene. You are worth the effort after all.
Now that you know how to build motivation and stay motivated you can accomplish anything you wish. What will you choose?
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