What better time to make positive changes in your life than the beginning of a new year?
From resolutions of improved physical activity to newfound resolve to avoid negative influences, making the decision to start off your new year with a sober state of mind is not only a personally beneficial decision but also one that could dramatically change the course of your entire existence.
After all, beginning your recovery journey starts with a single step in the right direction. So, using the beginning of a new year as motivation to stick to your commitment of sobriety and substance avoidance is not only a good idea, but one that could help you achieve your goals and aspirations all year long.
What Is Dry January?
Dry January is a new year’s resolution to go the entire month of January without drinking (or consuming any other type of drug). While many people will debate its origins, the concept of beginning the new year with a healthier state of being is nothing new.
For generations, people have used the inspiration of a new year to identify some of their more problematic behaviors and commit to either avoiding them or discontinuing them altogether.
While making the decision to abstain from any and all substance use for the entire of month of January is a solid starting point, carrying that perspective into the rest of the year should be the goal for anyone struggling with addiction.
Dry January Benefits
With the amount of celebration and excess that accompanies the holidays, taking time to detox your system by cutting out alcohol and other harmful substances can have positive effects. Some of the more impactful benefits of committing to dry January include:
- Improving Your Health
Excessive drinking and drug use can lead to some serious negative health issues. These include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, problematic sleep patterns and emotional instability. Deciding to abstain for an entire month allows your body to begin repairing the damage that addiction inflicts, resetting vital bodily functions and stabilizing your overall wellbeing.
- Reestablishing Control Over Your Life
Most people living with addiction did not simply wake up one day and decide, “I think I’m going to start struggling with alcohol and drugs today.” Like any other disease, a substance use disorder becomes worse over time, causing a person to act out of character and begin neglecting the relationships in their life, as well as, their own well-being. By making the decision to complete dry January, you take that all-important first step toward reestablishing your sobriety and taking back control over your day-to-day existence.
- Remembering You Don’t Need Alcohol or Drugs to Enjoy Life
For many people living with an addiction, substance use and abuse becomes so engrained in their lives that they feel they cannot live without it. Making the decision to abstain for an extended amount of time forces you to not only find alternative methods of stress management, but also rewires the way in which your brain functions. This allows you to begin experiencing life once again without any chemically-induced buffers, rebooting your brain and enabling you to find enjoyment in all the things your addiction forced you to neglect.
Why It’s Worth it to Partake in Dry January:
When has making the decision to treat yourself better been a bad idea? The fact of the matter is that deciding to participate in dry January is a great way to begin the new year; it is also a great way to springboard into a sustained recovery journey.
As human beings, we are wired to set goals and actively work toward those objectives in order to find purpose within our lives. This can be something as modest as deciding to make your bed every morning all the way to something as complex as achieving a doctorate.
No matter the size or magnitude of your goals, simply setting them allows you to feel purposeful and inspired on a daily basis.
That’s why setting the goal to not only participate in dry January, but to also accomplish that objective, provides you with an achievable task that can reinforce your sense of purpose while setting the tone for your entire year to come.
What If You Experience a Relapse this Year?
The best intentions in life can be undone with poor planning. If you make the decision to participate in dry January but neglect to distance yourself from negative people or places, you may be setting yourself up for a relapse incident.
It should be noted, too, that many people who decide to abstain from substance use and begin their recovery journey encounter a setback at some point during their rehabilitation.
If you experience one of these setbacks or moments of relapse during your recovery process, don’t lose all hope.
It is so important to begin your recovery with the help and guidance of a qualified clinical facility. They can encourage you throughout your setbacks and remind you to stay focused and motivated if you experience an unforeseen relapse.
Remember, no one expects you to be perfect throughout your recovery journey; they expect you to be persistent. That way, if you fall down, you won’t stay down. You pick yourself up, dust yourself off and continue down your path toward long term sobriety.
Holistic Addiction Treatment and Relapse Prevention at Ranch Creek Recovery
Take this year day by day, and each day, take time to acknowledge how strong and worthy you
are and how far you’ve come. Should you or a loved one find yourself in a situation where your substance of choice has crept back into your life and you need help getting back on track, we’re here for you.
We work with every aspect of an individual to ensure complete care. We will focus on healing your entire being and better help you prepare to avoid triggers, prevent relapse and sustain sobriety moving forward.
Learn about our addiction treatment programs or contact us today. We’re here to help in any way we can.