Overcoming addiction takes a great deal of patience, determination, practice and courage — none of which you’re likely to feel you have much of when you first enter drug rehabilitation. The good news is you’ll learn a great deal in rehab, not the least of which are skills you’ll need once you complete treatment and return home. What are these skills and why are they important? Let’s take a look at five of the many skills you’ll learn in drug rehab.
But first, it’s important to note that the overriding takeaway from going into drug rehab is that you’ll learn about the disease of addiction. It’s from this base that all the skills you’ll acquire during treatment originate. You have to know what you’re dealing with before you can learn from the experience or begin to appreciate and incorporate the skills you’re taught during your time in rehab. As you grow, you might notice you’ve developed in the following five areas:
- How to Manage Cravings
What tops the list of skills you want to learn while you’re in treatment? If you’re trying to overcome addiction to alcohol or drugs, especially if you’ve been a long-time user, it’s likely how to manage cravings. During drug rehab, you’ll spend a good deal of time learning skills that’ll help you do just that. These will include things you learn in one-on-one counseling and group therapy, as well as through participating in various treatments, educational lectures and readings.
- How to Avoid Triggers
While you’re in drug rehab, you’re in a safe, secure environment with medical professionals on hand 24 hours a day. If you have a crisis or need immediate counseling, it’s there for you. You might be worried that once you return home, you’ll be left to flounder, especially when triggers to use unexpectedly occur — and they will.Another invaluable skill you’ll learn and start practicing during drug rehab is how to avoid triggers — and, equally important — what to do when you can’t avoid them. Strategies might include waiting triggers out without acting upon them, distracting yourself with activities such as crossword puzzles or cleaning, engaging in stimulating mental or physical activity, talking the trigger over with a trusted friend or your sponsor, and more.
- How to Deal With Stress
Life doesn’t happen in a vacuum. While you’re in treatment, life goes on in the world outside. You might return to a highly stressful environment, job, relationship or living arrangement.How well you can deal with everyday and unexpected stress will be an important component of your recovery. During rehab, this is another area counselors and therapists will pay attention to, giving you the tools you need to feel more comfortable dealing with stress on your own.
- How to Cope Effectively
Life in sobriety isn’t always going to proceed on an even keel. There’ll be ups and downs, and you’ll encounter both expected and unexpected challenges. Any one of these could become serious enough to derail your sobriety — if you blindly enter recovery thinking you’ve mastered everything you need to know about living drug- and alcohol-free. The truth is you’ll always encounter situations in which you might be tempted, or something happens that throws you off and jeopardizes your hard-won sobriety.You need a variety of effective coping mechanisms and strategies to help you maintain your sobriety. During drug rehab, this is exactly what you’ll learn. Strategies often taught include recommendations to avoid being isolated and alone, because that’s when your emotions tend to go overboard and you might be tempted to resort to your drug of choice. Being with positive people who support your recovery goals and know what you’re going through is another important coping mechanism. You’ll learn all about these during treatment.
- How to Communicate Effectively
When you’re healing from addiction, there’s a tendency to close yourself off emotionally, to clam up and not speak what you’re feeling. This is especially true when it comes to communicating with your loved ones and family members. You don’t necessarily have to tell them every thought you have or emotion you experience, but you do need to interact with them, clearly and honestly telling them what’s going on with you and what you need.For example, you might not feel physically recovered yet and need time before diving back into a strenuous former routine. Getting physically sound should be a priority in recovery, as well as going to meetings and keeping up with the other recommendations you received during rehab. Learning effective communication skills so you can talk with your loved ones and family members is another area where you’ll benefit during rehab.
Bottom line: There are many skills you’ll learn in drug rehab. Keep in mind that you’ll be adding more each day in recovery. You’ll also find that it gets easier to identify which ones are most effective and which ones to employ during certain situations as you go on. Every day is a learning opportunity. Be proactive, hopeful and determined. Rehab is the starting point for your life in recovery — and it’s the best place to begin to acquire the skills you’ll find so helpful when you return home.
To learn more about drug rehab, call us today 844-877-5280.