Recovery from substance and alcohol abuse is a lifelong process that requires dedication and commitment. Once you are discharged from rehab, there are often a lot of temptations and rough roads along the way. When pulling through reality to reenter society, you may find yourself having a rough time finding new friends, a new job, picking up where you left over at school, and moving on with life. At first, it will feel different and lonely. Many recovering addicts may find the pressure too much to bear and eventually fall back into relapse.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be disastrous. There are better things to do that will help you jump-start your life. One favorable option that allows recovering addicts to occupy themselves, have a reason to get out of the house and do something constructive, is volunteering. Volunteering has been linked highly with having positive psychological impacts during substance addiction recovery. Here are some ways.
Enhance your sense of belonging, community, and purpose
It’s common for recovering addicts to forget about what they liked, their purpose in life before addiction, and what it was like to live before addiction. It’s easy to get lost once again after being discharged from rehab. However, volunteer work may help you reclaim your sense of belonging. Working with children, seniors, or animals could help boost your confidence and redeem your sense of purpose in life. Volunteering is an ideal way to blend back into the community and retrieve positive influences from experience.
Gain a better perspective of life
In the aftermath of rehab and being discharged from rehab, it’s understandable that you may feel a little discouraged and lonely. If you have minimal support back at home, you may feel it knocking a little too hard. Instead of idling at home and making your mind the devil’s workshop, you could consider volunteering to help you have a more positive perspective. You are likely to work with people far less fortunate than you are, which could help you see the broader picture. You will feel less alone, and it might help you open up.
Improved mental health
A calling to help others and feel appreciated will make you feel accomplished. After drowning in shame and guilt during your substance addiction phase, volunteering might be the reason you redeem yourself, improve your mental health, and gain some peace of mind. Knowing that you are still useful in the community reduces stress levels significantly. Simple acknowledgments and appreciation from the beneficiaries should help you feel good about yourself.
Use your time productively
Volunteering offers you the chance to get in touch with reality and use your time productively. The period of inactivity after being discharged from rehab can fuel psychological torture, emotional distress, and social tension. With some work to do, and schedules to follow, you will find yourself building skills, retracing your footsteps back to a more productive self, and even gain more confidence to help you approach your dreams confidently.
Allows you to explore your passions
Apart from giving back to the society, volunteering gives you the perfect opportunity to invest in something you are passionate about, but you wouldn’t get the time to dive into it directly after being discharged from rehab. In most cases, it’s often difficult to turn your passions and hobbies into a sustainable career. However, volunteering gives you the chance to fulfill those desires and enrich yourself and others.
In therapy, you were probably encouraged to explore your passions as a way to manage your addiction and seek some sort of fulfillment as an individual. For instance, if you are good and passionate about art, you could volunteer at your local elementary school and show kids what hidden talents you have. This will help you feel good about yourself, sharpen your skills, and who knows, you might just turn your passions into a career.
When you volunteer after treatment from rehab, it adds an entirely new layer of experience for you and your beneficiaries. You also get to meet other recovering addicts who act as a source of support and motivation. You have every reason to volunteer for the sake of your emotional and mental health well-being.
Are you wondering how the road to recovery looks like? Don’t worry, it can be overwhelming thinking about it, but we can help you walk down that road. Reach us on our contact information and talk to us at 833-762-3739. We are your friend in times of need.