When addiction takes over your life, it can quickly lead to self-neglect and poor mental health. This is due to the stress, toxic relationships, poor diet, and lack of exercise that come with self-destructive behaviors. Once you start the recovery process, taking care of your mental health is critical. Otherwise, you may be driven to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol.
Fortunately, when you start a treatment program, you will receive a proper assessment and diagnosis. If mental illness is present, your treatment plan will include counseling and medication to address your symptoms. But, it’s important to take charge of your mental health as well by following these five tips.
1. Fuel your body with healthy foods.
Many people who struggle with addiction also have an unhealthy relationship with food. You may eat too much or too little, and the foods you do consume probably tend to be high in calories with little nutrition. Now that you are working your recovery, it’s important to give your body and brain the nutrients they need to function their best.
Additionally, a nutritious diet keeps your blood sugar, energy levels, and mood stable. It also keeps you feeling good, which reduces drug cravings. Here are some of the best foods to add to your diet:
- Colorful fruits and veggies
- Protein from lean meats, seafood, and low-fat dairy products
- Healthy oils and fats
- Superfoods like berries, sweet potatoes, salmon and flaxseed
- Plenty of water
2. Have fun and relax every day.
It's common for people in recovery to be unsure of how to relax and have fun without drugs and alcohol. This is an adjustment, but you will eventually break the habit and learn to associate fun with other things.
Start breaking the habit today by taking up a new hobby, spending time in nature, and going out with friends and family. Even if you’re not particularly happy about doing these things, they’ll pass the time and help you rediscover your passions.
3. Live one day at a time.
Addiction treatment will teach you to live one day at a time. The reality is that we don’t have control over the past or future, so giving your energy to them will cause you to miss out on the present.
Every day is a new day, so focus on being present and enjoying what you have in front of you. With enough practice, this will become easier to do, and it will benefit the rest of your life. Living in the moment makes you happier - it’s one of the best things you can do for yourself!
4. Be mindful of your mental state and emotions.
Stay mindful of your physical sensations and mental state. It’s normal to have fluctuations in your mood, but one bad thought or experience does not have to ruin your entire day. By being more in tune with your body, you can change negative emotions and address physical discomfort so they don’t lead to drug cravings.
5. Build a healthy routine.
Having a predictable routine does wonders for your mental health while in recovery. This makes it easier to stick to healthy habits like waking up and going to sleep at the same time, eating all of your meals, dressing in clean clothes, etc. And, when you work self-soothing hobbies into your routine, you’ll have built-in opportunities to relax and unwind with the things that make you happy.
To start your journey to recovery, contact Awakenings Treatment Center. We can address your substance abuse and mental health disorder and help you transition into a healthier routine.