Day 351: As I approach this ‘milestone’ of one year sober I feel more like it’s a noose than a prize. My anxiety has been heightened of late and my moods more erratic. I haven’t came close to relapsing but my dreams and fleeting thoughts have contained more visions of drinking and being careless. It isn’t uncommon for this to happen as you become more ‘comfortable’ in recovery so it’s important to identify and acknowledge these feelings and raise your guard temporarily.
But what have I learned works for me in the last 11 months throughout my treatment, recovery and general day to day life?
- Saying ‘No’ is OK
- Listen to your body
- Don’t listen to the beast
- Read anything and everything. Novels. Bios, Self-help, Manuals. Fill your head
- Watch less news
- Watch more films
- Listen to podcasts
- Listen to your children (and I mean give them your undivided attention)
- If it won’t matter in a week don’t let it ruin your day
- If it matters enough in a week what are you going to do?
- Taking antidepressants long term is not to be ashamed of
- Talking about addiction, pain and our darkest hour is not to be ashamed of
- Don’t treat people in a way you would not like to be treated
- A smile and a hello to a passing stranger could make their day. Acknowledge
- Buy yourself something spontaneous. I bought myself some running socks today. I bought myself a book on ‘Chakras’ last week
- Buy something spontaneous for somebody else
- When was the last time you went for an unplanned walk? Just do it
- When was the last time you went for an unplanned run? Just do it
- Give a Yoga Class a go
- Attempt head stands
- Find new drinks that can be your ‘reward’ to replace booze
- Donate to charities. I used to spend £5 on a pint in some places!
- Check in with old friends and work colleagues
- Don’t play on your phone before bed
- Don’t play on your phone in bed
- Put the scales away
- Eat pizza if you fancy pizza. We can’t be good all the time 🙂
We are all unique beings and we are all on our own journey through life. I have chosen to put my well-being and happiness ahead of anything in the last year yet I still suffer with anxiety and depression. There is no fairy-tale ending with a lifetime of happiness in every waking second but you can certainly change your mindset and that alone will make each day that bit better. Some days will be brilliant but on the shitty days, the ones that in the past would break me I have a wealth of things in that above list which I can turn to to get me through the day so tomorrow can be a new unconnected roll of the dice.
And I like my odds.