Shoreline Sober Living, San Diego, CA
Coping with boredom in recovery

Feeling bored is an issue we have all dealt with at some point in our lives; however, boredom for individuals who are in recovery is a factor that many, if not all individuals, have to deal with. Boredom to the majority of us is not that big of a deal, however to an individual who is completely adapting their lives and cutting out addiction, boredom could lead to the individual relapsing.

When a loved one is new to the process of addiction recovery, they constantly have to battle seeing people, places, and events that very well may trigger a form of negative emotion related to their past. These triggers will more than likely start creating cravings for the substance the individual was once addicted to, which has a high possibility of leading to a relapse.

Boredom is an extremely powerful trigger when it comes to substance use disorders. If an individual is new to being sober, they could very well look to illicit substances to fill the boredom in their lives.

What is boredom?

Boredom in its natural form is no different from any other challenging emotion we feel. Boredom will typically be a mix of:

  • Lethargy
  • Restlessness
  • Dissatisfaction

Remember that your boredom may be attempting to tell you something. Boredom more is not that you have nothing to do with yourself but rather that you have no activities that are in any way:

  • Engaging
  • Satisfying
  • Challenging
  • Appealing

There is no quick fix to boredom

These days, the majority of us, when bored, will quickly grab our phones, tablets, or laptops when we feel the slightest bit of boredom comes on. While scrolling through endless social media posts may fill your boredom, it will also waste hours of your life when you could be doing fulfilling activities, having new experiences, or learning new skill sets.

Reaching for your digital device is a rather mind-numbing activity and will, in the long run, most likely end up leaving you agitated and irritable.

Focus your mind to avoid boredom

The key to avoiding boredom in early addiction recovery is to achieve a state of mindfulness with your surroundings early in your recovery stage. Practicing the art meditations, yoga, or a variety of other mindful activities will allow your mind to calm and focus. Learning to live in the present while listening closely to the type of thought patterns you have will help with your boredom.

Learning to understand your thoughts is an essential aspect of learning self-control. When an individual learns self-control, it will naturally lead to a significant decrease in your relapsing. Learning vital skillset that will keep you rational and calm when cravings appear or if you become triggered by an event is highly beneficial to your decision-making processes, especially regarding addiction treatment and recovery.

Work towards a goal

Addiction recovery is a lot more than simply learning how to stay on the road to recovery and abstaining from drugs and alcohol; it is also learning to live a new life without the substance. Individuals who set goals ensure they have a purpose for their lives. These people are the ones who live their life to the fullest while learning new activities that do not revolve around illicit substances.

Most individuals who suffer from addiction do not realize how much energy, time, and effort addiction takes from them until they are truly free of that type of life. Feeding an addiction with adverse consequences is extremely soul-destroying and draining; the longer you are an addict, the more time and energy the addiction steals from you.

Learning to fill your time in recovery is vital to ensure you abstain from relapsing; setting goals for things you are genuinely passionate about will help steer clear from falling back into the addiction trap.

Disconnect from social media

Social media can be one of the most toxic platforms we allow ourselves to be sucked into. It is full of people faking their lives, which makes others who feel as though they are not doing as well feel even worse about their lives.

Spending your life endlessly scrolling through social media will never be a positive way to spend your time; furthermore, several studies have shown that social media causes a complete sensory overload.

Instead of indulging in social media, try to fill your time with activities or experiences that will grow you and your mindset; if you don’t want to cut social media out of your life altogether, put time limits on your usage and stick to them. When you disconnect from social media, even just for a couple of days, you will feel an improvement in your mindset; you will be able to think clearly about the goals you want to achieve in your life.

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