Starting a New Life in a New Place After Treatment
It is not uncommon for clients to realize, over the course of their treatment, that the environment in which they have spent much of their lives may be toxic and destructive. Regardless of their home lives, many of the worst influences have been around them from early in their childhood. In fact, being exposed to just a few bad influences for long enough can normalize destructive behavior and put a child, or even adult, on a path to serious problems.
Many clients and their families therefore choose a treatment facility in a different state where the environment and people are not quite so familiar. Of course, this may seem daunting. However, it supports the upcoming journey of eliminating drugs and/or alcohol.
In fact, removing oneself from their former environment can be so liberating that they simply don’t want to return to their former circle of friends, or even the area in which they used to live. This often eliminates one of the most significant triggers for relapse.
But How Do You Acclimate to a New Place?
You may be in your 20s, 30s or even 40s and have a set group of friends. This is also the case for people around you. It is much more difficult to make friends later in life. But look at it as a new beginning and a way to learn from the mistakes that you made while under the influence. Indeed, this feeling of discomfort can do wonders to improving your social skills and integrating you into a new life and group of friends.
You will likely have help from the people you meet during treatment. Many are in the same boat, and you may see them not only at the rehab center, but at support groups and meetings now and in the future. Others going through a similarly difficult period in their lives are great resources to have. Not only can they offer insight into what to expect over the course of your recovery, but they are very helpful in helping you navigate the ups and downs of a new and rather foreign place.
Finding a job is also a critical part of integration into your new home. While isolation, on the other hand, is not a good for your recovery. A previous criminal record may disqualify you from many jobs, but oftentimes treatment programs are very happy to employ recovering addicts. Why? They are often motivated to do a great job for themselves and others that are living through what they once did.
Most importantly, you probably have never seen or understood your full potential. Forcing yourself to integrate into a new circle of friends and way of living is a great way to prove to yourself that you can do it, and that long-term recovery may not be as hard as you think.