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Setting Boundaries in Early Recovery

Seeking treatment is a commendable first step on your recovery journey. However, now that you are in early recovery, you may wonder what you can do to best support your long-term healing. An important first step to take in early recovery is setting boundaries for yourself and others.

Yet, what exactly happens in early recovery?

What Happens During Early Recovery?

As noted in an article from The Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, early recovery is the stage where you focus on confronting the internal and external damage substance use disorder (SUD) has caused in your life. Moreover, some of the things you may have to come to terms with in the early stage of recovery are the harm your SUD cause to your relationships, your finances, or your self-esteem. Listed below are some of the things you may work on during this repair stage of your journey:

  • Processing negative thoughts and feelings in therapy
  • Making amends when possible in your relationships
  • Learning to feel comfortable with being uncomfortable
  • Making self-care an integral part of your recovery
  • Building a healthy lifestyle balance
  • Developing healthy alternatives to substance use

During early recovery, you may temporarily feel worse as you adjust to this new stage of your healing journey. Therefore, as you remain particularly vulnerable to relapse during this stage, setting healthy boundaries becomes critical for your sobriety.

Setting Boundaries

By setting boundaries in early recovery, you are building healthy patterns to support your long-term physical and mental well-being. In recovery, you can work with your therapist to determine your triggers and cravings as well as evaluate locations and relationships that might increase your desire to use again. Moreover, here are some ways you can identify and set boundaries for your wellness:

  • Identifying boundaries:
    • Reflect on your individual needs
      • Find comfort in non-substance activities
    • Discover objects that increase positive emotions
    • Address objects that increase negative emotions
    • Evaluate the role that physical care plays in your mental-wellness
      • Do you enjoy walks/hikes?
    • Acknowledge how you can incorporate self-care into your life
    • Learn what qualities create healthy relationships
  • Establishing boundaries:
    • Write it out
    • Develop communication strategies
    • Build a plan of action

Knowing how to identify what is and is not comfortable for you can help increase your awareness of your mind and body.

How to Build a Coping Plan

As noted in an article from The American Journal on Addictions, building healthy coping skills is an important element in relapse prevention. In particular, building strong social support in recovery is an important factor in forming healthier coping skills.

At The Guest House, we believe in meeting you where you are on your recovery journey. Through a diverse variety of therapy options, we can build a customized recovery plan that makes sense for you and your specific needs. Moreover, in early recovery, we are committed to helping you learn how to start dismantling your self-defeating behaviors with self-care and a range of therapeutic modalities designed to meet your creative, clinical, and holistic needs.

Setting boundaries is an important step in early recovery that supports self-awareness. Without firm boundaries, it can be easy to slip back into unhealthy habits before you can truly start dismantling your self-defeating behaviors. However, you can start setting boundaries for your recovery by identifying and establishing your individual needs to support the healthy life you want for yourself. At The Guest House, we are committed to providing highly customizable recovery plans to support your specific needs on your journey to recovery. Call (855) 483-7800 today.