Many people find it difficult to fill their time after becoming sober. People who are chemically dependent often spend a significant amount of their time getting, using, or recovering from using. Once they are no longer using drugs or alcohol, boredom might set in if they don’t have things to fill their time or to look forward to, this is a common relapse trigger for many people.
It’s important to have fun dates in the diary, little milestones we can achieve whilst we’re still in strange times. We are now facing subtle changes to ease the lockdown, but it’s still a slow process. As we continue to stay at home, it’s only natural to grieve for the things that could have been; the holidays, weddings, birthdays. But there are things we can do to ensure we have a calendar full of important moments, and plenty of smiles. So here are seven ways you can look forward to something right now.
Do something for yourself
As the majority of us are staying at home, it can be easy to fall into a routine that sees us never changing out of our pyjamas, with days merging together. For some, staying in your PJs is a luxury, for others, a sign of despair. So pick a day – one that you know you’re less likely to be interrupted – and devote a couple of hours to a hot soak in the bath, a refreshing shower or any self-care ritual that leaves you feeling a little revived. Put that down in your diary every week and look forward to dedicated you-time.
Put it in the calendar
Research when the next release of your favourite TV show, book or PlayStation game is being released, and then write it down in your calendar. Entertainment like this has the beauty of encouraging us to escape normality for just a few moments, and in doing so, will give you some respite if you’re struggling with the current situation.
When you’ve ordered something in the post, there’s always a little rush of delight when it’s finally delivered. That feeling is to be cherished! Allow yourself a little mindful indulgence this week and order that thing you have been thinking about for a very long time. Pop the date of delivery down in your phone and look forward to it making your morning!
Plan your exercise
If you go out for a walk, jog, cycle, or anything that gets you moving on a daily basis, it might be time to change up your routine. Why not try exploring the coast paths, or turning left instead of right outside your house? Aim to change your route on a set day every week so you look forward to a change of scenery.
Try a weekly ‘work-in’
It might be that you’re missing a monthly book group, or weekly night class or your studies have been put on hold and you want to dedicate your time to something different, while in lockdown. Again, using the power of Google or Facebook, search for an online group, webinar, or online get-together that happens every week that you can participate in.
Make your week look like a week
Try not to let the days roll into one another, and stick to as normal a routine as possible. By that, I mean ensuring you work on your work days, sign off on time, and keep weekends or rest days for enjoyment.
Focus on the long run
Finally, in ‘normal’ circumstances, it’s common that you won’t really be thinking about that event you’ve been invited to in 2021, but right now we do have time to dwell. So, think about that wedding next June, get the invite front and centre on the fridge and remember how much fun you had at the last one you attended. Whatever future event it is, it will come around again and your summers will look brighter.
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