Fun is relative when it comes to recovery. There is a fine line between having fun in recovery and searching for ways to drink or use substances. The difference between the life you had then and now are not even close to being the same thing. To have more fun in recovery means to let go of all the places, people, and the ways you used to have fun and cultivate a new life. You may remember how close you were to lose your job before you quit using drugs or drinking. Maybe your marriage was saved as a result. To stay safe and maintain your lifestyle and relationships without putting them in jeopardy, it helps to know what it means to have fun in recovery.
Find a New Sport
Drinking and using drugs likely took up much of your time and energy. Now you are free to do what you want without worrying about hangovers, not feeling good, having less energy, and not being able to focus on what you are doing without thinking about substances. In reality, you probably will deal with triggers and cravings in recovery. You may think about them, but if you are distracted with positive, healthy activities, it makes it less prominent. Team sports like bowling, soccer, and volleyball are great activities to get you outdoors and meeting people. There are indoor leagues for this, too. Try a few things, join a sport and social club, or find sober spaces to meet people and just try new experiences for a while until something sticks.
Being creative is one way to use your brain in recovery. It helps start up the brain in new and interesting ways. Wanted to try that sewing class? Call up a local store that offers classes. Have you always wanted to give writing a try? Look up local writing groups to see what people are doing. The key is to start doing research. Attend meetings, hit up the local library for some events, and find out what is happening in your area. If you are interested in trying fun things, you will see that there are spaces to go that offer creative energy. Coffee shops often have open mics which are sober and fun.
Take a Class
This may sound like going back to school, but you are in a new season of learning. If you are past the first difficult months of sobriety and recovery, it may be time to look at what you want to learn going forward. Make this about fun at first, rather than really returning to academic learning. That is a different ball game, altogether. An online or offline course can be anything, on any topic. Maybe you want to learn how to put together a website. Maybe you want to do an offline course like planting a garden, learn to fix up a car yourself, or live better on a budget. Cooking classes are popping up everywhere and can be interesting ways to meet other people. Don’t be afraid to try something new. The world is your oyster in recovery.
Giving back to others in recovery is just good for the mind, body, and soul. There are many ways to give back to people who are less fortunate. For those who struggle with addiction, the best thing is to offer your time and energy to other people. If you have a talent for working with kids, or want to tutor low-income students, there is a place for you. If you want to give back to people in recovery, there are places to do that. If you are looking for ways to volunteer and meet others, there are groups that meet who love to share their passion for serving others and get to know you in a deeper way. Churches or places of worship are a way to do this, but there are secular organizations that also provide space for this. Don’t push too hard, too soon, but do be on the lookout for ways you can give back and start meeting more people in recovery.
It may seem antithetical to having fun, but gardening is a great way to build some skills and learn new things about yourself in the process. Getting on your hands and knees to plant some things is healthy and healing. If you are struggling with recovery, you can turn to nature to help. Take some first time classes on how to get started. Join a gardening club or go to a local place where people love to try new things with gardening and see what’s interesting. Maybe you will find it fascinating to learn how to grow plants instead of flowers. It is also highly therapeutic and can be a social activity if you join a co-op where people come and plant and harvest together.
Get Outside the Box
Wherever you choose to spend your time or talents, don’t hesitate to think differently in this season about recovery. This is your time to do things in a new way that will provide opportunities for you to grow and learn about yourself and others. You are not the same person you were and you will never be the same again. After coming through that experience, you are now in recovery and have a new outlook on life. There are many places and people who will accept you for who you are here and now. Don’t be afraid to embrace who you are and go find your community. Build a set of friends who will be there for you through thick and thin. Now is the time to o out and do it, while also having fun in recovery.
Casa Capri is designed for women who are struggling with addiction to find hope and a purpose. Our holistic approach makes us unique for a woman-centered recovery center. We desire to help you build community and find healing in recovery. If you are looking for community and connection in rehab, call Casa Capri today: 844-593-8020
Melissa Holmes Goodmon is the founder and CEO of Casa Capri Recovery, a leading California addiction treatment center created just for women—by women. Melissa is a licensed clinician and has stayed on the cutting edge of women’s treatment since 2006. Because of her own beautiful recovery story, she is proud to be among a small group of trailblazers since founding Casa Capri Recovery for Women in 2011, leading the way for other women to join them in this otherwise male-dominated industry. She is considered an advocate for the recovery community in the truest sense, standing up to discrimination and legally fighting for the rights of sober people in recovery to live in peace. To learn more about advocacy or if you’ve experienced discrimination, you can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out casacaprirecovery.com for more information on our program, or please give us a call at 844-207-4880.