How to Maintain Your Sobriety

Choosing to recover from substance use is courageous, but staying committed to your sobriety takes strength and perseverance. While mistakes might be expected on the road to recovery, you can overcome these setbacks with suitable support and coping methods. Knowing how to stay sober after inpatient care can help foster positive practices and habits for maintaining your sobriety. 

What Is Maintaining Your Sobriety?

Maintaining sobriety is a commitment to recovering from addiction through healthy coping mechanisms. It is accepting that, while recovery is challenging, you'll persevere through the challenges and setbacks to fulfill your commitment. Maintaining sobriety can involve finding healthy solutions like joining support groups, exercising, eating healthy, managing stress, avoiding triggers and building healthy relationships to help you recover. 

How Do You Stay Sober in the First 30 Days?

Following a routine, sticking to healthy habits and avoiding triggers can help you stay sober in the first 30 days after rehabilitation and beyond. When you leave inpatient care, trying to stay sober for the first 30 days can be overwhelming. Relapse is common and often expected during this post-rehab recovery. 

Unlike inpatient rehab, you must learn to cope with daily challenges like building relationships, resisting old habits and urges, and dealing with finances, work and past mistakes without 24/7 supervision and professional care. Navigating life post-rehab and working on recovering is a process and it requires patience, understanding and resilience.

While you may make mistakes in this process, sticking to your healthy coping mechanisms even when you experience a setback is crucial to maintaining sobriety. Here's some tips on how to stay sober after inpatient rehab:

Identify Your Triggers

Many factors, like places, people, past mistakes, stress and memories, can evoke urges to misuse substances. Identifying these triggers so you can find ways to cope with them is vital. Understand what triggers you have so you can devise ways to deal with or healthily face them.

Deal With Withdrawals

Recognizing and managing post-acute withdrawal symptoms like depression, fatigue, insomnia, anger, irritation and anxiety healthily, like speaking to a therapist or meditating, is essential for your recovery. Post-acute withdrawal symptoms can impact your recovery, and treating these symptoms can help you recover more effectively.

Recognize a Relapse 

Recognizing when you're about to relapse might be challenging. However, you can identify relapse patterns and get support before you fall back into old ways. Signs that you might relapse can include:

  • Putting yourself in situations with drug or alcohol use 
  • Obsessive or addictive thinking 
  • Behaving more impulsively or thinking less rationally
  • Engaging in self-sabotaging behavior and reversing your progress
  • You feel like drugs and alcohol are the only solution to help with feelings of pain and sadness

Stay Clear of Old Routines and Habits

Returning to where you misused substances or people who encouraged and enabled your addiction can set you back to old behaviors and habits. While it might be challenging to avoid all these situations, you can find ways around them. For example, try changing your routes if you know you must pass by a place where people use substances. You can also end unhealthy relationships with people who use drugs or alcohol. 

Get Care Post-Rehab

While you might not have all-day support and supervision, you can seek help from outpatient programs and support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA). There are also many community support forums that you can join. These programs and support groups can give you the support you need to maintain sobriety. 

Have a Solid Support System

Lean on supportive and loving friends and family to help you through recovery. Seeing and doing activities with loved ones can help you avoid harmful situations. Speaking to a therapist is also an excellent way to get your thoughts out, work on your thinking and deal with any mental health issues. A great support structure can provide the motivation and support you need to maintain sobriety, especially when you experience recovery fatigue or are feeling down and demotivated. 

Focus On Self-Care

Committing to bettering yourself is important in your recovery and a great way to maintain sobriety. Eating healthy, working out, prioritizing your hygiene and looking after yourself can give you a newfound purpose. It can also make you feel great and more motivated when you start seeing your progression. 

Work On Your Finances

Your finances might be a reason for your past substance use. While it might seem daunting, taking on your financial situation during recovery is a great way to stay committed and motivated. You might not fix your situation overnight, but ticking off and resolving the minor money issues can be a significant accomplishment. Resolving factors that lead to substance misuse can give you the belief and motivation to progress in your recovery. 

Deal With Stress and Anger

Drugs and alcohol might've been your past solution for managing stress and anger. Focusing on healthy ways to manage these feelings during your recovery can help you control them and resist turning to old habits when you feel angry or stressed. Activities like yoga, hiking, meditation and box breathing can help you address these positively. 

Confront Past Mistakes

Past mistakes can bring up negative feelings like guilt and shame. While these mistakes and feelings associated with them can be overwhelming, addressing them is necessary. Feeling guilty or shameful can consume you, leading you to relapse. Taking time to reflect on your past mistakes can help you take responsibility and forgive yourself for them, helping you move forward with your recovery. 

Prioritize Balance

While support groups and healthy living can help you maintain your sobriety, you must find a balance between these tasks. Fixating or finding other ways to be compulsive, like strict dieting, can do more harm than good. Finding balance in everything you do is and important task and can help you let go of obsessive or compulsive behaviors. 

Seek Help for Setbacks

You might be in a situation where you slip up and drink alcohol or use another substance. While this might dishearten you, remember that setbacks are normal. However, a minor setback is no excuse for returning to your old patterns. Instead of judging yourself for this mistake, seek help from friends, family or a support group immediately so that they can get you the help you need to get back on track. 

Learn to Be Social While Sober

Avoiding triggers and uncomfortable situations might be necessary — you must return to your everyday life. Socializing may be part of that at work or with family. Practice being comfortable in these situations, especially when there is alcohol around. Ask for a non-alcoholic beverage, and if you feel uncomfortable with people asking you to drink, practice telling them about your road to recovery story. 

Find Hobbies You Enjoy

Finding hobbies like playing a sport or learning an instrument can be a great way to utilize your time. It can also give you something to focus on and take your mind off the urge to use substances. If you get bored, try new hobbies. Stimulating your mind and body with healthy activities and tasks can help you stay on your path to sobriety. 

Try Community Service

Giving back to the community or helping others can build your morale, renew your worth and provide you with purpose. Volunteer at a nursing home or help out at a soup kitchen. Helping others can give you the strength and confidence to want to better your life. 

Celebrate Small Wins

Every day you get through recovery is a win, and it's essential to recognize that. Praise yourself for making it through a day, month or year of sobriety. It can make you feel great, help you realize how far you've come and motivate you to know that you can succeed on this journey. 

The Role of Outpatient Care in Maintaining Sobriety

Outpatient care can play a significant role in your recovery. Navigating life post-rehab can be challenging, and outpatient care services can support and help you in this transition. Outpatient care involves following a daily treatment plan to help you stay on course with your recovery. You also get support, including tasks, therapy sessions and medical prescriptions. With a structured program and support regime, you can have peace of mind that you'll have the resources to readjust to your life and work through challenges healthily after inpatient care. 

Continue Your Road to Recovery With Diamond House’s Outpatient Program

Maintaining sobriety might be difficult, but you can stay committed to your goal with suitable care and support. At Diamond House, we can help on the journey to recovery through our outpatient care services. Our individualized programs and care solutions provide the mental and physical support you need to stay dedicated to your recovery. 

Contact us today to learn more about our outpatient addiction program. 

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner at Diamond House Detox
Vicky is a board certified Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. She began her nursing career in healthcare by working in the intensive care unit, and then an inpatient psychiatric hospital. After realizing the mental health needs of both the patients and the families she served, she became a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. Throughout her experience working with clients, she has developed a passion for those with dual diagnoses and specializes in helping individuals recognize the issues driving their substance use. This recognition has been crucial to the individual’s success in treatment. Vicky opened Diamond House Detox so that she can address these issues early on in a therapeutic environment to allow clients to transition to the next level in their recovery.
Vicky Magobet
Latest posts by Vicky Magobet (see all)