Content medically reviewed by Vicky Magobet, PMHNP-BC, on April 7, 2020.
The journey to recovery comes with many milestones along the way. Whether you're celebrating a week, a year or a decade, sobriety milestones are a way to take stock of how far you've come. Many recovering addicts find it motivating to share these milestones, while others choose to keep their successes silent. If you're unsure which route to take, consider both sides below before making your decision.
Your addiction was most likely not a proud part of your life. After going through a difficult and devastating struggle, you eventually made the decision to break free from old habits and pursue sobriety. This was a personal decision — while you may have received encouragement and support from others, you were the one behind the steering wheel.
Likewise, when it comes to your continued sobriety, you're the one who gets to choose how and when you reveal your achievements. While many might choose to share their good news publicly, be patient with yourself if you're not ready for accolades or attention. If sharing too soon brings pressure or stress, then you might want to keep it quiet until you feel comfortable sharing.
Congratulating yourself or receiving praise from others might feel like a scary concept. You might worry about living up to the expectations of your community. However, sharing your milestones comes with many valuable benefits beyond a pat on the back.
No matter how long you've been pursuing sobriety, celebrating your accomplishments is an important reminder of how far you've come — and how easy it is to stumble. Sharing your recovery journey helps you to acknowledge what you've achieved and, most importantly, all that you've overcome.
Sharing your story also serves as a helpful reminder that you're not alone. While your addiction may have been surrounded by shame and secrecy, you've now got a chance to use your story for good. You can help encourage others, showing them that sobriety is possible and inspiring them to stay the course. You'll feel freer, prouder and more resolute than ever to continue working hard for recovery. As a result, sharing your milestones can be a powerful relapse prevention tool.
Ultimately, the choice to share or stay private is up to you. As we've discussed, many recovering addicts do find celebrating their sobriety milestones to be a huge part of recovery. It can help them stay motivated, aid in relapse prevention and build closer connections to those around them.
However, if you relate to the advantages of privacy, it might serve you best to keep these milestones for yourself. Whatever works best for you and your health is going to be the right choice. Even if you don't want to share your news with the world, you can celebrate your milestones in more subtle ways, such as by:
If you're not in recovery yet but would like to be, feel free to reach out to Diamond House Detox. We offer medically-assisted substance abuse treatment programs in northern California, with a specialty focus on the connection between mental health disorders and substance abuse. To learn more about our in-patient rehab program, simply contact us today!