In recovery it can be beneficial to keep moving forward in some way. As we get comfortable in our recovery, we may end up stagnant or finding ourselves feeling the lack of growth. There are many ways we can move forward in recovery from addiction. Growing isn’t just about working steps or progressing in therapy. We can grow in many different ways, improving ourselves in a healthy way.
Using Online Resources
There are many great resources online to grow. From blogs and articles to tools and communities, the web is full of opportunities for growth. Comfort Recovery shares about nine great recovery resources you can find online, and my personal experience is that I benefit from being open to new ways to grow, like using the Internet.
Try connecting with an online community like those found on In the Rooms. You can read great blogs, posts, and articles on websites like this and learn a lot about recovery and self-development. There are also tons of mobile apps for people in recovery and seeking ways to grow.
Nutrition and Health
When I was using, I certainly didn’t take care of my body very well at all. In early recovery, I survived off energy drinks and nicotine. I eventually gained weight back, growing quite unhealthy. I never exercised, wasn’t eating well, and could feel the effects. Although we think of diet and exercise as helping our physical health, diet can affect our mental health.
Try taking care of yourself a bit more. Eat at regular times, watch what you eat, and get moving a bit. You don’t need to be super toned or exercise until you’re hurting. Try going for a walk, getting outside, and investigating your relationship with yourself. When we take care of what we put into our body and how we take care of it, we can really cultivate a mental state with more clarity and understanding.
Whether you got sober in twelve-step programs, secular recovery groups, with the help of a therapist, or by yourself, it can be beneficial to find ways to continue to grow. Some people do this by staying active in their recovery program and working the steps, but this isn’t the path that works for everyone. We all can find ways to continue to grow, regardless of our preferences for recovery programs, spirituality, religions, or scientific beliefs.
You may investigate ways of self-development that aren’t strictly related to recovery such as meditation, yoga, exercise, or other trainings. By keeping an open mind, we allow ourselves the opportunity to find something new which may benefit us. When I got sober, I really thought I knew what was useful to me. By remaining open, I found a path of growth that really works for me. My path may not be perfect for everyone, but it works for me and that is what matters.
Working with Others
Working to support others is a great way to continue growing. As we teach and work with others, we learn quite a bit ourselves and develop a deeper understanding of recovery and growth. We can do this with the twelfth step of twelve step programs, taking others through the steps and program. We can also be of service by taking service commitments at meetings, talking to other people, and helping clean up.
Although twelve-step meetings offer a great way to be of service, we can be of service in many other aspects of our lives. If you see a stray shopping cart in the grocery store parking lot, take a moment to put it away. Hold the door open for someone. Spend some time volunteering with those that may benefit from your help. There are many simple opportunities to work with others and support our community every day.
Whatever you decide to do, it’s important to be open to growth. We may know more today than we knew yesterday, but there is always more growth that is possible.