Addiction Recovery: 5 Ways to Practice Mindfulness

Addiction Recovery: 5 Ways to Practice Mindfulness

Overcoming addiction is a multifaceted process. One helpful tool is mindfulness. However, many people in recovery don’t realize how beneficial it can be to practice mindfulness during recovery and beyond.

What is mindfulness? Simply put, mindfulness is learning how to live in the moment. Practicing mindfulness in a substance abuse treatment center helps those in recovery become fully aware of their thoughts, emotions, and surroundings. Many people find mindfulness helps them remain in control and fight temptation. Keep reading to learn five ways to practice mindfulness while treating addiction.

  1. Learn How to Be Present
    In this busy, non-stop world, it’s easy to check out of the moment. Modern-day distractions, like smartphones and the internet, put the mind in overdrive. People often feel overwhelmed by past and future worries. Being present is more than just being physically somewhere; it’s about living in the now.
    Mindfulness teaches how to look past the “what-ifs” and how to focus on the current moment. Unplugging technology is one way to achieve this sense of being. Turning off devices helps those in recovery avoid daily stresses and enjoy life around them. Imagine what’s possible by simply disconnecting from the world to be present in today.
  2. Release Downbeat Thoughts
    “I’m not good enough.” Most people have believed that statement at one point or another. Negative thoughts are a forgotten plague, and this way of thinking can be highly destructive for those struggling with addiction.
    With so much good in the world, why do some people in recovery only focus on the bad? Negativity bias is the human tendency to only dwell on trauma, worries, and negative stimuli. Learning how to release those damaging thoughts is beneficial during recovery. Simply looking in the mirror and reciting positive daily affirmations can help you look on the bright side of life.
  3. Start Meditating Regularly
    Those struggling with addiction often focus on one thing: getting their next fix. Learning how to refocus the brain is a must, and meditation can help. Meditation is an ancient practice that calms the mind. When practiced consistently, these relaxation techniques can reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and even help manage withdrawal symptoms. Plus, meditation opens the mind to new thoughts and exciting possibilities.
  4. Take a Deep Breathe
    Breathing is an involuntary action. In scientific terms, inhaling delivers vital oxygen to the cell, and exhaling removes unneeded carbon dioxide. Humans breathe without much thought. However, not all breaths are created equal, and conscious deep breathing may be advantageous for those dealing with addiction. A long, deep breath instantly calms the nervous system. This mindfulness technique can help ease stress and curb addiction cravings.
  5. Build a Support Circle
    Humans are social creatures. People form platonic and intimate relationships with like-minded individuals to share their hopes, dreams, and aspirations. However, addiction often isolates people from the outside world, leading to feelings of inadequacy and depression.
    Mindfulness teaches that all people are worthy of love. That’s why everyone in recovery needs a compassionate support circle. Those who surround themselves with positive, supportive people are more likely to stay sober and reach their goals.
    Mindfulness Is One Piece of the Puzzle
  6. Recovery isn’t a one-size-fits-all process. A successful program relies on multiple steps to help people learn how to live happy, productive lives free of addiction. Mindfulness is one piece of the recovery puzzle that no one should overlook. It takes practice to achieve mindfulness, but once you do, sobriety will feel more attainable and rewarding.

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