All over the world, the coronavirus pandemic has made governments enforce lockdowns, quarantine, and stay at home orders. This crisis has also halted group gatherings which means people cannot go to concerts, restaurants, schools, churches, and even support group meetings for people in recovery. This is a very challenging thing especially for people who are just new to sobriety. The fear of social isolation and the bouts of anxiety during the pandemic can make it tough to resist the temptation of drinking or using drugs again.
To stay away from a relapse, it is important for people in recovery to continue seeking fellowship even during the pandemic. Staying at home does not mean you have to completely isolate yourself socially. Maintaining your support network can help you in many different ways.
Here are some reasons why fellowship is very important during the pandemic.
It reminds you that you are not alone
With social distancing becoming the new buzzword, many people mistake this to mean that they have to completely distance themselves from other people. Social distancing refers to “physical distance” but that does not mean you have to shut yourself out entirely. When you are socially isolated, this will only bring out feelings of fear, anxiety, and insecurity. The loneliness could push you towards your past addictions.
Many people in recovery, however, suffer from damaged relationships with their loved ones because of their past addictions. Old friends are not present anymore or are not willing to continue contact. This is why it is important for people in recovery to find a support group who they can turn to in difficult times. You can find such people by attending recovery meetings that are now available online so you can attend even if you’re just at home.
When you stay in contact with your support group, even through virtual recovery meetings and calls, this can remind you that you are not alone in this crisis. There are people who are undergoing the same experiences who want you to succeed in your sobriety journey.
It gives you an outlet to release your emotions
For people who are living alone during the pandemic, not having a sounding board to voice out your thoughts and your struggles can be really tough. Even if you live with other people like your family, you might not be comfortable about speaking your thoughts with them as you don’t want them to become worried about you.
If you stay in touch with your recovery support group, you can have a means to let out your emotions. You can comfortably communicate with them without the fear of being judged or condemned. These people will not judge you because they understand what you are going through. Talking about what you feel can already be a form of therapy to help you go through your struggles in staying sober.
It allows you to seek help and feedback when you need it
A lot of times, it is easy to overthink your problems and make rash decisions. When you talk it out with other people, this gives you the opportunity to seek other insights. Hearing different feedback from people can help you form better decisions on what to do.
Keep in mind that a great support group will never impose on you or force you to do anything, instead, they will be there to listen to you and give advice if that’s what you need. You can benefit from the collective experience of your group members in going through your recovery journey. You can learn valuable techniques on how to overcome cravings and how to stay on the right path.
It motivates you to stay sober
When you’re alone and isolated, you might start feeling that the entire world is on your shoulders. The worry and anxiety can burden you so much that you’ll start thinking that the only way out is to drink or do drugs. When you relapse, it can become much worse especially if you feel that addiction is not something you can physically, emotionally, and mentally win over. Many people who relapse start believing that being sober is impossible making this an excuse to drink or use drugs again.
Fellowship can help you change this perception. Being in contact with people who are committed to stay sober can become a motivation for you to achieve the same. It gives you hope that there is really a way out. When you hear stories from people who have continued to be sober for many years, it can inspire you that you can also do it and it is indeed possible to start a new chapter of your life away from drugs and alcohol. Your support group can also help you stay accountable for your actions and persevere to stay sober.
If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, help is available.
Contact Morningside Recovery by Lighthouse today.