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Care For, Calm and Express Your Self - from the Health and Healing Series at SupportNet.ca - Resources for Your Recovery.

Recovery is learning to enjoy life - without the use of alcohol or drugs that alter mind or mood.

It is treatment for the condition of addiction - an approach to the challenges of life - and a path to personal growth.

Recovery requires us to learn - about the true nature of addiction.

It may be personalized - but it has its necessary Principles and its Ways.

The Principles of Recovery provide direction - to the choices that we face each day.

The Ways of Recovery provide us with tools - that help us to heal - and to enjoy life on life’s terms.

This Learning Seminar introduces the ways to Care For, Calm and Express Your Self -

What you need to know - and the importance of these ways to Your Personal Program of Recovery.

Introduction

The use of alcohol or drugs begins as recreation - or with some benefit to feeling.

To those who progress to addiction - alcohol or drugs become the solution to whatever issues may occur.

A treat - an escape - a way to relax - a supportive friend. A way to celebrate or grieve - and a response to anger or stress.

To the addicted person - a drug becomes these things and more.

Those in recovery want to feel well. But their usual solution is not a healthy way.

And so they must find other ways to care for, calm and express their selves.

Care For Your Self

There are many things that we can do to feel better and to nourish the process of healing.

Our goal will be a balanced routine of care for body, mind and spirit.

Treatment centers know the value of structure and routine to a healthy day.

But many of those who leave do not continue with these ways.

Use your Personal Program of Recovery to sustain your daily routine - one day at a time.

Start the day out right - and get out of bed at a regular time each day.

The first thirty minutes awake is a most important part of the day.

Use this time to settle your mind with a quiet routine of quiet music, recovery reading, muscular stretching, meditation or prayer.

Avoid H.A.L.T. Don’t let your self get too hungry, angry, lonely or tired.

Eat at regular times each day. Repeat the Serenity Prayer - whenever you find your self occupied with worry or with upsetting thoughts on your mind.

Connect with others in recovery. Talk with them - and listen to what they have to say.

Muscular stretching and aerobic exercise provide a relaxing break in the day.

They will calm your mind and energize your body.

Don’t try to do everything at once - or to fit too much in your day.

Schedule your time to avoid any rush. Review your program each week - and let go of things that overly pressure your day.

This will help with your day - and will counteract the frustrating symptoms of Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome.

Avoid care taking. Early recovery is a time to focus on the needs of your health.

You will be in no position to be helpful if your recovery does not take hold. And to show that recovery is possible - is always the best way to help.

Calm Your Self

The first step in learning to calm our self is to do the things already mentioned.

Many search for ways to calm their selves - without taking the time to care for their health.

Learn to let go of the stuff in your head and that talks us into worry, fear and distress.

So much of the mental chatter that we repeat each day does nothing but stir stressful feelings.

Pause for a moment. Take a short break.

The rushed habits of the day are usually just that - habits that we become accustomed to - and see as the only way.

Take time to check in with your self - the thoughts on your mind - and the condition of your body.

Notice the stuff on your mind. Ask your self what good it is doing you right now. Let it go - and repeat the Serenity Prayer quietly within your mind.

Do this once - or a thousand times each day. It is the best way to learn how to let go of the sick mental habits that plague our mind.

Take a breath deeply to the bottom of your belly. Let it go - and feel the muscles of your neck, shoulders and chest relax.

Do it again - and repeat a calming phrase to your self as you let go of your out breath.

Include time for exercise within your Personal Program of Recovery. Take a brisk walk, run or go for a swim.

Aerobic exercise provides a break in the day. It is treatment for anxiety and stress.

Learn ways to calm and to settle your self.

SupportNet offers introduction to Progressive Muscular Relaxation - Stress and Anxiety Management - Self Talk, Meditation and Prayer - Abdominal Breathing and much more.

Practice for the difficult while it is easy - and take time for your self today.

Express Your Self

So many have been taught so little about how to relate to their feelings.

They are signals from our body - for us to notice, consider and respond.

Sometimes it is important to act on feelings. But it is always best to first consider their accuracy and meaning.

It is not useful to hold feelings - stirring them with repetitive thought - and allowing them to wear upon our body.

There is always an option to express feelings - to let go of the tension they bring.

Talk of your experience with others. Listen to what they have to say. Journal Write about the stuff inside you. Notice the stuff on your mind and learn to let go.

Be mindful of aimless imagination. It will mostly just stir the sick feelings of early recovery.

Release tension with exercise. Talk - Draw - Write - Paint - Vote and Connect. Ask for help to let go of justified anger. Give thanks for times of relief.

Justified anger is a sickening state. Say a prayer on behalf those who have harmed you. Do this every night for two weeks. It may not change them. But it will certainly change you.

In Summary

Recovery is a time to find new ways to care for, calm and to express your self.

Use your Personal Program of Recovery to maintain a daily routine of self care. Learn ways to calm and settle your self. Practice these during quiet times.

Remember that feelings are to be noticed, considered and allowed to pass. Explore the ways to express your feelings - and to learn how to let them go.

You have now reached the end of Care For, Calm and Express Your Self.

Look for this and other Learning Series topics at www.SupportNet.ca - Resources for Your Recovery.