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Celebrating Every Success in Recovery

Anyone who has lived through substance abuse, whether firsthand or through a loved one, can tell you that the road to recovery from addiction is long and tough. Recovering from substance abuse is never easy. 

When you find positive ways to celebrate your sobriety and practice relapse prevention, you’ll find it much easier to stay on track with your recovery goals. Sobriety means that you’ve been able to change your negative behavioral habits and live a transformed life, and that’s definitely something worth celebrating.

In this post we’ll discuss some easy and practical ways you can celebrate your recovery.

Healthy Ways To Celebrate

Finding healthy ways to celebrate is very important. Recovery can sometimes be a daily challenge when it comes to sobriety. That’s why it’s important to celebrate your successes where you can if you’re in recovery. 

Choosing to stay in sobriety involves many challenges and stages. It's not just a lifestyle change; it's a reset of the brain and body as they return to healthy, natural ways of functioning. It’s taxing, but it is far from impossible. And conquering such a challenge is impressive and commendable. 

Small Milestones to Recognize in Recovery

The first step toward being able to celebrate recovery events is remembering them. One of the most essential benefits of celebrating recovery milestones is that it shows that recovery is absolutely possible. These milestones represent significant progress and development in your recovery path. 

In most circumstances, milestones serve as indicators of how long someone has gone without drinking or taking drugs. These milestones represent various stages of the recovery journey. The first milestone occurs 24 hours after a person quits using substances. Other typical milestones include seven days, thirty days, ninety days, six months, and one year without using drugs or alcohol. 

Celebrations may not feel as necessary after a year, but they are still usually encouraged. Celebrating after five years, for example, might help people appreciate how much their lives have improved.

It doesn't matter if you celebrate your recovery on the anniversary of your sobriety birthday, the day you finished treatment, or each month you stay sober as long as you celebrate it in some way. For smaller milestones, such as month-to-month sobriety, you may do something little for yourself, such as treating yourself to lunch one day or purchasing those shoes you've been admiring.

Celebrating sobriety milestones may appear insignificant, but it can actually help many individuals maintain their abstinence. Milestones can indicate progress toward long-term objectives and demonstrate that recovery is always possible.

More Than Just 12-step Recovery Milestones

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) developed the Twelve Steps as a spiritual foundation for personal recovery from the effects of alcoholism, both for the person using alcohol and their friends and family through Al-Anon Family Groups.

Celebrating recovery milestones became popular soon after 12-Step organizations were created, and it became common to commend people for their recovery with small gifts at the start or end of a 12-Step meeting with small coins or tokens. After the first year, coins are normally distributed less regularly and on the year anniversary of sobriety.

But celebrating your recovery extends beyond the 12-step recovery milestones. Other recovery milestones don’t have a time limit. Instead, they represent your growth, particularly in areas formerly hampered by drug and alcohol use. This is so widespread that people frequently claim to have "recovered their feelings." These can be thoughts and sensations that were muted or completely avoided by substance use that will resurface in your life. This can be a difficult shift, but when handled properly, it can make or break your new sober perspective. Working with professionals, such as counselors or therapists, can help you learn to cope with these novel feelings in a healthy way, which will be the crowning achievement of your recovery.

As you reach these emotional milestones, you'll have a better understanding of who you are and who you aspire to be. Faded interests will resurface, and new hobbies may arise as a result of your renewed enthusiasm for life. 

Treat Yourself

Treating yourself is one of the best ways to celebrate your recovery. 

People who use drugs realize how difficult it can be to stay sober and are rightly proud of having achieved and sustained recovery. Recovery is both difficult and wonderful when you walk through it with the support of your friends and loved ones. You will most likely face setbacks, but they will be insignificant in the grand scheme of things. Celebrate the fact that you’re still alive and moving forward one day at a time by treating yourself every time you reach a milestone.

You can choose something that makes you happy or something you've been wanting to do for a long time. Explore a new place, take a class to improve a new or old passion, or order takeout from your favorite restaurant. Reward yourself—you deserve it!

Every day that you stay sober is a reason to celebrate. Recognizing your accomplishment requires learning to appreciate small victories.

Celebrate With Your Loved Ones

Addiction is crippling and tough for individuals going through it, but it can also be heartbreaking to our friends and family who observe the impact it has on our life. 

Your friends and family will probably be happy to see "the old you" now that you've decided to get sober. So why not share your success with them? Going to a game, holding a party, going to a fantastic restaurant, taking a vacation, or simply spending more quality time with them are all ways to celebrate. Your friends and family will want to join you in whatever way you choose to celebrate.

Participate in Recovery Activities

You might want to commemorate your recovery by participating in recovery activities with individuals who can relate to your journey. Some local recovery organizations hold sobriety celebrations for community members on a monthly or annual basis.

Some communities also may hold regular events such as meetings or opportunities to hear from guest speakers on a regular basis. Attending one of these parties or joining such an organization may not only serve as a celebration, but it may also help you maintain your sobriety by broadening your support network.

Write Yourself A Letter

Another way to celebrate sobriety is to write yourself a letter. You might want to write about everything that has happened in the last year and recognize the good and difficult moments, as well as how far you've come in your healing journey.

You can write your thoughts down in a journal or in an email to yourself. It's a great way to not only document your addiction recovery path, but also to show yourself love and admiration for everything you've accomplished. You can also read through your letter again if you're feeling sad, discouraged, or in need of some consoling words.

Share Your Sobriety Story to Motivate Others

Your addiction recovery story has the power to inspire others and can help others going through the same ordeal feel less alone. It can also give hope to people who feel hopeless in their efforts to overcome substance abuse.

People have fought back against substance abuse issues, and their stories can serve as a reference for how to tackle a similar situation. While recovery milestones are often a source of pride for the individual, they can also help others recover.

There are many ways you can share your story, whether it’s by sharing it in a group counseling session, writing about it in your blog, creating a post on social media, or making a video and publishing it on YouTube and other video-sharing websites.

People who have been addicted to substances might believe there is no way out of the psychological agony and urges they’re experiencing. Seeing someone in a similar situation who has recently accomplished hours, days, months, or years of sobriety, on the other hand, may provide social proof that sobriety is attainable. 

Maintain a Gratitude Journal

A gratitude journal is exactly what it sounds like—a notebook in which you jot down things you're grateful for. 

Don't worry if you don't consider yourself a writer. If you want, you can keep your diary entries secret, and it's best to keep them short and sweet. Sometimes writing down a single sentence can be enough to encourage you to stay on the right track. This type of gratitude journaling has many positive and surprising benefits, such as stress reduction and improved sleep quality as well. 

Volunteer in Your Community

Volunteering is an excellent way to give back to the community while meeting new individuals who may be able to help you in your recovery. Plus, most people feel a great sense of reward when helping others, and volunteering at a local rehab, shelter, or free clinic. Every community accomplishment represents an opportunity to recognize all of your hard work, as well as those who have assisted you along the path. 

You can "pay it forward" by working at a local organization or becoming a recovery sponsor for someone who has recently accomplished sobriety. Volunteering doesn’t have to be recovery-related, but many recovering addicts find it extremely rewarding and therapeutic.

At Jackson House Rehab, we are completely committed to assisting you in reclaiming your sobriety in order for you to regain your life. We are dedicated to providing compassionate, evidence-based detox, treatment, and the best of personalized care. We can also assist with any co-occurring mental health conditions that may be contributing to your problems.

Are you or someone you love looking for drug and alcohol treatment in San Diego? We specialize in substance abuse issues to help you find sobriety. For more information about our services and treatment, please contact us anytime at (866) 396-3655.

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