The Not-So-Obvious Benefits of Sobriety

This article is sponsored by Bright Future Recovery – a holistic drug detox center in Northern California.

When it comes to life for those in recovery, there is one undeniable truth: maintaining sobriety for any period of time is beneficial. While some of the advantages of staying sober are obvious, there are a number of benefits of maintaining sobriety that are overlooked.

Battling and overcoming addiction can be one of the most difficult and most rewarding things a person does in their lifetime. Becoming clean and sober has a considerable effect on a person’s day-to-day life. From increased financial stability to improved interpersonal relationships and better overall mental and physical safety, the effects of sobriety are plentiful. Here are a few examples of how sobriety can positively affect the life of an individual:

  • One of the most easily noticed but sometimes overlooked effects of sobriety is the positive influence it has on a person’s outer looks and feelings. Those who are facing an active addiction typically do not take careful measures when it comes to personal hygiene. Treatment programs help clients relearn these personal care aspects of life so they can once again take pride in their outward appearance. This often affects clients’ self-esteem in a positive way, making them more confident in themselves on the inside as well.
  • Another positive aspect of recovery is the money that is saved in the process. Those overcoming addiction rarely think about how much money they have been losing to their addiction. Both alcohol and illicit or prescription drugs can cost a considerable amount of money. In addition, as addiction progresses, more of the addictive substance is required, increasing the amount of money being spent. Rehabilitation stays also often cost patients money. Insurance plans help to cover a considerable amount of a patient’s stay in most cases, though out of pocket costs do have the potential to add up. Once a treatment program has been completed, patients will often note they are able to save money for other parts of their life, like hobbies or vacations instead of losing that same amount of money to their addiction.

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  • Sobriety also results in a considerable increase in the time and energy an individual has available during their day to day life. Addiction is a time-consuming thing, and without it present anymore there is the potential for other activities or productive parts of life to consume that time. Those who go through treatment programs often discover new passions or hobbies that they enjoy. They now have both time and energy available for these hobbies and tasks, allowing them to further themselves within their passion or work environment.
  • Once sober, many clients are able to rebuild or establish relationships with family members and friends. Addiction of any type has the potential to be detrimental to interpersonal connections. Often friends and even close family members are pushed away throughout the course of an addiction. Once the person dealing with addiction has become sober, there is often a chance for those relationships to be fixed and for bridges to be mended.
  • Sobriety also allows for the potential of new friendships and relationships to grow out of increased social interaction. Because the addiction is no longer taking up the patient’s time, that time can be spent doing other things like meeting new people.
  • One of the most unique opportunities sobriety presents a person with the ability to help another person in their sobriety. Whether in a friendship, sponsor-sponsee relationship, or even a professional sense, being an ally in another individual’s sobriety is a rewarding and beneficial aspect of one’s own sobriety.
  • Lastly, being sober leads to a reduction in the number of high-danger situations a person is in. Addiction and obtaining illegal substances often put people into potential harmful situations. Without the need for those interactions, the number of real-life dangerous situations decreases.

Sobriety gives patients a chance to move forward in their life instead of dwelling with past mistakes. Treatment programs can help clients work through past trauma, depression and other mental disorders, and help instill positive coping methods and thinking patterns. Once sobriety is established, underlying issues that may be causing or affecting the addiction can be addressed.

While getting clean on your own may sound like a good idea, attending a treatment program has been shown to decrease the likelihood of relapse after an addiction. Finding support and correcting negative behaviors in an external setting away from possible triggers is important. For those looking into alcohol and drug rehabilitation options, Bright Future Recovery in Northern California may be the perfect place.

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5 Tips For Staying Sober Over The Festive Season

Whether this is going to be your first sober Christmas or your 10th you need to put a little bit of thought and effort into how you are going to manage the upcoming festive season.

Over the Christmas period and New Years Eve the alcohol flows, the parties are pumping and drugs are encountered more often at social gatherings. Even addicts and alcoholics with long time recovery will be facing these challenges.

***Disclosure -The links in this post may contain affiliate links and I may receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on a link.***

5 Tis For Staying Sober Over The Festive Season

Have A Plan

Make sure to plan your Christmas and News Years Eve festivities long in advance. If you are new to recovery and facing your first sober festive season you may feel at a bit of a loss. Very likely previous festive seasons were rather drunk and debortuous.

The best way to spend your first Christmas and New Years Eve is with other recovering alcoholics and addicts that understand exactly what you are going through. You need to be around people that are sober and that can show you how to have fun without alcohol and drugs. You need to create new memories and experiences to look back on.

Chances are high that you are not in contact with all the people that you were using with and drinking with. Being in recovery is about doing things differently and surrounding yourself with the winners.

Many groups in recovery hold sober parties over the festive season – make sure you know where and when they are and make a commitment to join.

If you are going to spend Christmas with family make sure that you plan ahead, that you are aware of your triggers and how you are going to cope. Talk to your family, recovery sponsor and counselor about your relapse prevention plan. The more support you have the better.

Be prepared for the conflicting feelings you will have. Chances are high that you are going to be feeling a lot of uncomfortable and often conflicting feelings. You may feel sad, lonely, angry, anxious and even excited. All of these feelings can be triggers. Have a plan in place for dealing with these feelings.

Christmas Tree decoration

Stay Active & Busy

Stay active during the holidays both with activities to do, but also with physical activity that will be good for you health. Find things to do that will give you a full body exercise as well as provide fun and entertainment.

Go hiking, mountain biking or any other outdoor activities – get yourself out there into nature. It will do you the world of good.

Another great way to stay clean is to read recovery literature – you can read the Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book which gives a lot of recovery information, along with personal stories from alcoholics. There are also lots of books written by alcoholics and addicts that will give you strength, inspiration and understanding of addiction.


You need to keep yourself busy and, just as important, you need to create new memories to look back on. It is so common for addicts and alcoholics to think back to their drinking and using days, remembering only the fun parts and leaving out all the damages and chaos that came with it. Building new and happy memories of sober festive seasons will make it easier to face each time.

Stay Connected With Your Support System

If you are a member of Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, SMART recovery group or any other recovery group such as through your church make sure to stay connected and attend meetings throughout the holidays.

If you went to a drug rehab center contact them and find out if they have anything planned for the festive season that you can attend.

If you are going away on holiday find out if that area has any recovery groups, chances are very high that they do. Just because you are on holiday does not mean you can forget about your recovery program – you will need it more than ever.

Make sure you have a sober buddy on call that you can phone at any time if you feel like having a drug or taking drugs. You may even want to have a sober buddy for the holidays – you can help each other stay sober and attend events together. It is so much easier to stay sober when you are not alone.

Woman wrapping Christmas gift

People, Places & Things

I’m sure you’ve heard this before over and over again – but it must be said again. You need to avoid the people, places and things associated with your using. Be very careful about the events that you attend, pay careful attention to who may be going to events that you would like to go to and make sure that you stay away from any places that may trigger you.

How To Cope Being Offered Alcohol/ Drugs

Chances are high that no matter what you do or where you go, at some stage during the festive season, someone may offer you a drink or a drug.

Make sure that you have a response prepared rather than being caught by surprise not knowing what to say. You may be comfortable with saying you can’t drink, but you may not want to tell people yet why you are not drinking. That is fine if you don’t want to give the real reason, but a response lined up and ready.

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