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Prioritizing Self-Care to Prevent Relapse

Sometimes self-care is something we struggle to prioritize in our daily lives because we assume everything else is more important – our obligations and responsibilities, our families and loved ones, our jobs and finances, our recovery program. What we often don’t realize is that without self-care, the health and efficiency of everything else, especially our recovery program, can easily be threatened. Self-care is the foundation upon which we should build everything else, not the other way around. We usually put self-care at the bottom of our important to-do list or leave it off altogether. We think of it as extraneous and unnecessary. We associate self-care with expensive luxuries we can’t afford, or taking time we don’t have to do things that are wasteful and unproductive. On the contrary, self-care is all the things we do for ourselves, for our mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health. Without doing these things, we run the risk of burning out, of breaking down, of becoming more depressed, stressed out and panicked than we already are. Our health suffers. Our willpower deteriorates. Our ability to withstand the urges and temptations of our addictions becomes depleted, because we haven’t been restoring our internal resources and rejuvenating ourselves from within. We’re much more likely to relapse when we feel defeated and run down in these ways.

Many of us have been sacrificing self-care for most of our lives, even before our addictions and mental health issues took hold. One could argue that our issues had the opportunity to take hold of our lives, and control us and overpower us, because we weren’t strengthening, empowering and developing ourselves through self-care. We weren’t preventing serious health issues by taking care of ourselves. When we do prioritize self-care in our everyday lives, we strengthen our resolve and our resilience to prevent relapse. We’re happier. We’re more at peace within ourselves. We’re more empowered, and we’ll therefore make healthier choices with our well-being in mind.

What does self-care look like to you? It will be different for each of us. Some of us might want to commit time to daily prayer and meditation. We might want to do something as simple as reading a good book in a hot bath at the end of a stressful day. We might want to light candles at our altar and connect with our ancestors. We might want to make sure we’re getting regular exercise, or frequently spending time with loved ones, or getting out in nature more often. However you care for yourself, commit time and energy to self-care as much as you can, even in small increments and moments throughout the day. We give our recovery program a chance to really work for us, and we offset the chance of relapse, the happier and more at peace we are, the more we’re taking good care of ourselves.

The Guest House is a welcoming and supportive recovery home where you will be met with open arms, wherever where you are on your journey, without judgment or expectation. Call 855-483-7800 today for more information.