It is said that your five closest friends combined are a good representation of who you are as a person. While you are all unique individuals, it is true that we gravitate towards people who have similar interests and hobbies as us. Otherwise, how would we get along? The friends we keep also influence our actions whether we like it or not. If you are in recovery, this is especially true if you are trying to live a sober life.
How Friends Impact Your Sober Life
One of the best things you can do when you are in recovery is to hang out with people who are in recovery themselves, preferably long-term. As well as being friends, they will be positive influences that you can count on. If you are struggling to maintain a sober life, they will be the ones to pick you up rather than drag you down into a relapse. These are the kinds of friends you need around you.
On the flip side, if you complete drug or alcohol treatment program and go back to hanging out with friends who drink or use, you’ll have a much poorer chance of maintaining a sober life. After all, the reasons you hung out before were more than likely based on using drugs or drinking alcohol. When that gets taken away, people often find that they no longer have anything in common with their old friends.
The people who return to hanging with their old friends as soon as they complete rehab have a much smaller chance of successfully leading a sober life. Unfortunately, the friends you used to hang out with most likely don’t have your best interest in mind, even if it isn’t intentional. They will want their old friend back, someone to party with and get high or drunk with. They are still in the addict mindset, and it is much easier to drag someone (you) back down into addiction than to lift people up. This doesn’t necessarily mean they are bad people, they are just in the own active addiction and do not know how to support you in your sobriety without derailing you completely.
The Best People to Surround Yourself With During Recovery
As mentioned, the best people you can surround yourself with are people who have a long time in recovery themselves. People who have gone through all the trials and tribulations you are going through. People who know what it takes to live a sober life. Most of all, people who understand how important sobriety is and why your recovery needs to be the most important thing in your life. These are the people you can count on to show you the ropes. They’ll have positive activities to partake in and make you see how much fun life can be without drugs or alcohol. And, they are someone you can call in a moment of weakness to take you off the edge and bring you back to your senses.
It is important to figure out ways to occupy your time in recovery. Find activities you enjoy, anything from yoga and beach volleyball to writing and reading. Occupying your mind is great because a bored addict is never good, idle hands and time lead to bad things and often to relapse. Keeping yourself occupied is essential, and it is also through these hobbies that you will find new friends who have similar interests that you have also.
If you hang out with people who are into your old lifestyle, the temptation will always be there, and you’ll be making a relapse very likely for yourself. If you genuinely want to stay sober and continue to thrive, hang out with the right people and stay away from the wrong ones. Trust us when we say your sober life is worth it!