When you are in the thick of your substance abuse, the very thought of never using again can be fear-inducing. Even if you do not want to keep using, thinking about what your body and mind may go through when you stop drinking or doing drugs can cause you to be apprehensive, to say the least. Feeling this way is completely normal, but allowing yourself to continue to avoid getting sober will do you no favors.
Ending your use is vital in order to start recovering from your addiction. And while you may feel like you could never possibly not use again, you are more than capable of getting sober. When you do, a whole new world of opportunity can open up for you that you never thought possible.
10 Reasons to Be Drug and Alcohol-Free
It is common for people to think that once they get sober, they will become boring and unable to have fun. But, think about it — how interesting and fun are you when you are addicted to drugs or alcohol? Probably not very. In fact, in your active addiction, you are likely more detached from others than ever before, less willing to talk about your emotions, more prone to having mood swings, and probably walking that fine line of using to prevent withdrawal symptoms from kicking in. But, when sober, you do not have to worry about any of that. Instead, you can begin taking part in and enjoying the many reasons to be drug and alcohol-free.
1: Freedom from physical dependency
Probably one of the biggest reasons to be drug and alcohol-free is that you can be free from physical dependency. When dependent on drugs or alcohol, you need to keep using in order to avoid experiencing withdrawal symptoms. This is because your body has grown accustomed to functioning with drugs or alcohol, so when you stop using, your body responds with upsetting effects. As mentioned before, it is likely that during your use, you were probably using in ways that prevented those symptoms of withdrawal from occurring. But when you are sober, you don’t have to even think about that cycle of using. You are no longer at risk of getting sick or suffering.
2: Avoid legal problems
No matter how you slice it, drinking and using drugs leads to legal problems. The more that you use and the longer that you allow your use to continue, the more likely you are to be arrested or get fined, among other consequences. One of the most common legal repercussions of alcohol abuse is DUIs. In 2016, 10,497 people died as a result of drunk driving and over 1 million people were arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Being drug and alcohol-free keeps you away from the situations that could otherwise land you in legal trouble.
3: Improved finances
Addiction is a disease that is extremely expensive. Even some of the wealthiest individuals have blown their fortune on drugs and alcohol. The constant craving and powerlessness over drugs and alcohol probably led you to spend more money on your addiction than you ever wanted to. By eliminating that cost by being drug and alcohol-free can allow you to start putting your money towards the things that you want to be spending it on — not the things you have to spend it on.
4: Improved emotional and physical health
When you break free of drug and alcohol addiction, you are no longer masking your emotions. You are also no longer jeopardizing your physical health. As a result, you can restore your body and even improve upon it by exercising and eating well, rather than using it as a dumping ground for mind-altering substances. Your emotional health can start to improve too because you are able to process your emotions without being influenced by drugs or alcohol.
5: Achieve professional success
Even if you were a functional alcoholic or addict, your career probably suffered because of your use. Or, you may have not been able to begin your career because you were hooked on drugs or alcohol. Either way, when you are no longer using, you have the ability to go after the career you want without self-sabotaging your own success.
6: Establish effective communication skills
While some people who are addicts and alcoholics remain good communicators, many do not. After ending your use, it can be imperative that you focus on improving your communication with others, especially if you struggle in this area. Positive communication can enhance your recovery and improve the functionality of your substance-free life. You can start to communicate better with your loved ones, as well as learn how to listen to them when they communicate with you. Your improved communication can build upon your relationships, and in turn, increase your network of support.
7: Be a better parent
If you have kids, then you know that your addiction has affected them in several ways. When you thought of being a parent one day, you probably didn’t think that you would be addicted to drugs or alcohol at the same time. As you free yourself of your addiction, you can become a better parent. Not only can you start to show up and be present for your kids, but you can also help them begin to heal.
8: Develop new relationships
A major aspect of getting drug and alcohol-free is letting go of past relationships that were toxic in your life. For example, you will no longer hang out with friends who still use. While that may make you sad, it also opens up a new opportunity for you to develop new relationships with others. Being sober can also encourage you to be open to others in ways that you never were before. Seeking out new relationships and accepting ones that come your way is only possible when you are of the right mind to participate.
9: Find enjoyable hobbies
Many people, especially those who use for long periods of time, find that because of their addiction, they stopped doing the things that made them happy. When you become drug and alcohol-free, you are no longer being held back by your substance abuse, allowing you to develop new hobbies and participate in activities that you used to prior to your addiction.
10: Be present
Above all else, removing active addiction out of your life gives you the gift of being present. This doesn’t refer to physically being somewhere, but being emotionally and spiritually there. When you are present in your life, you can benefit from an innumerable amount of things. For example, you can go to a wedding and enjoy the people around you rather than worry about when you should grab your next drink. And best of all, you can remember that wedding and the memories made rather than needing to have someone retell it to you the next day.
Do You Need Professional Treatment? Call Emerald Coast Today.
At Emerald Coast, we can help you stop your active addiction and start a new life. You do not have to remain chained to your substance abuse. You can live a life that is happy, fulfilling, and engaging.
So, do not wait. Call us right now. Our addiction treatment program can help you get your life back.