There are many reasons why moving away can be a great step in recovery. Substance abuse can be fueled by many things, including friends, locations, and even the climate. If you’re trying to overcome addiction, it’s important to remove yourself from as many of those potential triggers as possible.
In this blog post, we will explore some of the benefits of change, and why moving away can help you on your road to recovery!
5 Reasons Moving Helps Recovery From Drug & Alcohol Addiction
Addiction to drugs and alcohol is rarely a clear-cut situation. It’s a condition fueled by brain chemistry, personal history, and surroundings. Substance abuse can be fueled by many things, including friends, locations, and even the climate. However, moving away from one’s home can actually help some of these factors. Here’s how:
Moving leaves old friends and relationships behind. If you’ve got friendships that revolve around drug and alcohol abuse, it’s critically important to remove yourself from them if you want a chance at freeing yourself from addiction. Your friends are unlikely to understand your new life if they’re caught up in addiction. This goes for family members, too — if you think a relative is going to belittle and sabotage your attempts to stop using, get away as soon as you can.
We won’t pretend this is easy — friendships and family relations are incredibly important to most people. Plus, loneliness and isolation themselves are drivers of addiction! But if your social circle involves using drugs, refuses to understand your choice to stop using, and tries to sabotage your attempts to enter recovery, those relationships are best left behind. Plus, there are ways in recovery to build new, healthy relationships, too.
Your surroundings might be better off getting left behind, too. Old hangouts like bars and clubs where your substance abuse took root can be as much of an obstacle to recovery as people are. In some cases, it might even be dangerous to enter those places as a sober person. Seeing your old haunts and being around people who are still using can trigger powerful cravings and make staying clean feel impossible.
A fresh start in a new location can help you break free of the ties that bind you to addiction. It’s not easy; moving to a new location isn’t exactly stress-free. But if your surroundings are likely to make you relapse, it might be best to leave them behind.
A change in weather can help as well. Studies have shown weather affects mood. There’s even a name for it — seasonal affective disorder, or SAD. Thought to happen as a result of changing daylight hours, SAD is a form of depression linked to seasonal change. Depression itself is a driver of substance abuse. If you’re struggling with addiction and live in a climate that’s particularly dreary or triggering, moving to a sunnier location can help.
Moving removes you from your safety zone. Some people don’t like moving because it makes them feel vulnerable. But for addicts, this can be a good thing — when you move to a new place, you have no safety nets. You’re likely to know fewer people and be more reliant on yourself in other ways. This isn’t easy; feeling exposed is scary! But by allowing yourself to become vulnerable, you can approach talk therapy and other treatment without your defenses up, making treatment far more effective — and success far more likely. Plus, increased self-reliance will help greatly during and after treatment.
A new location is all about focus. When you’re in an unfamiliar space, you’re hopefully a lot more aware of your surroundings. This increased focus can be incredibly beneficial in treatment. Substance abuse is often a coping mechanism, something that dulls the mind so it doesn’t have to deal with something.
When you’re in an unfamiliar place, your focus sharpens and your brain naturally becomes more alert. This can make therapy far more effective at getting to the root of addiction — and allow you to stay focused on recovery once treatment ends.
Moving Does Raise A Question: Where Do I Live During Addiction Treatment?
One of the questions that often comes up when people are considering moving for addiction treatment is where they should live during their time in rehab. This is a great question, and there are a few things to consider.
First, it’s important to remember that not all drug rehabs require you to stay on-site. There are many different kinds of rehabs with different levels of care, and your living situation is likely to change, too. A center offering detox services is going to have a place for you to sleep while you detox, but as you advance through recovery you may not need that level of inpatient care anymore.
Outpatient addiction care is great because it can be worked into almost any schedule, but again, it’s not always clear where you live during this period in recovery. Most people consider a sober living solution at this point in their recovery.
Sober living is a safe, supportive environment where you can live with other people in recovery. Substance abuse is not permitted, and sober living spaces have a curfew or other rules in place to help keep you on the right track during this period of sobriety.
Finding a sober living home to call your own isn’t always easy. It’s why we created SoberLivingNearYou.com, a comprehensive listing of some of the nation’s best sober living providers. With thousands of listings at the ready, finding your sober living solution has never been easier. Call SoberLivingNearYou.com today to learn more!