Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could snap your fingers, become sober, and then shout to the world that you are living a successful recovery? While this sounds wonderful, recovery, unfortunately, does not work that way.

Think about it – if it were simple to be sober, addiction would never be an issue, would it? You could just will yourself to be sober and move on. The recovery process is a journey. And, because of that, it consists of many parts.There is no one thing that defines recovery – and that includes sobriety.

Getting sober is important, but there is so much more for you to incorporate into the process. If you are truly looking forward to a successful recovery, then you will want to make sure you have everything needed for the journey.

When going on vacation, you pack your suitcase with everything you need–the things you definitely must pack and those things that you pack just in case. You will want to do the same when venturing out on your recovery journey.

Not sure what you need? Here is a checklist for your recovery journey.

Being Honest About Your Addiction

Do you truly understand that you have an addiction? Do you understand how it is disrupting your life and wreaking havoc on your mind and body? If you can be honest with yourself that you need help, then you are ready to take the next step toward recovery.

Not taking the time to truly understand means that you may find yourself heading in the wrong direction – and may quickly relapse. Recovery requires honesty. And, it requires taking a hard look at yourself and your life – despite how hard of a step this may be.

Seeking Treatment and Rehabilitation

Seeking treatment and rehabilitation will provide you with a solid foundation for a lifelong recovery. It will allow you to learn and develop coping skills for everything you may encounter back in the real world.

Treatment for your addiction should be:

  • An individualized program that will allow you to learn to overcome your addiction in the best manner for you. This program will also teach you the best coping skills for you since addiction treatment is not a one-size-fits-all.
  • Easily accessed so that there is nothing to get in the way of you attending group and therapy sessions.
  • Both group and individual-based.
  • Designed to last for the appropriate length of time, extending into a sober living home after treatment if appropriate.
  • Reintegration techniques designed to give you the skills and knowledge you need to be prepared to go back into your life and remain sober – and in recovery.

Doctors, therapists, and other addiction specialists will thoroughly assess you and your addiction to determine the best program for your needs. They will be with you on your journey, providing you all the tools you need to successfully complete the program. The actual completion of the program is up to you.

Developing a Long-Lasting Support Team

When you are in recovery from an addiction, your support team can be the one thing that helps you keep it together when you are faced with a struggle. Temptation and opportunities to relapse can come at any moment – anywhere along your journey.

While most relapses occur shortly after therapy, it is not uncommon for them to occur years down the road. Encountering trials and rough patches in life can be the only reason you need to kickstart old habits.

When designing your support team, do so with longevity in mind. You need a team of individuals that will be with you throughout your journey. They will come to know you, your triggers, your coping skills – and how to help keep you strong in some of your weakest moments.

Put some thought into these individuals. You may wish to include trusted family and/or friends, as well as a medical professional and therapist.

Holding Onto Hope and a Positive Outlook

When you are looking at life ahead of you, you have the choice to look at it with dark, dull glasses or bright glasses full of sunshine. It truly is up to you. After all, you are the only one who can choose to see the good in your toughest days. Find your positive outlook and hold on to it.

Your recovery journey will come with rough patches and gigantic hurdles. The more you look at these with fear and meekness, the harder they will be to get over. However, if you remain positive, you will feel stronger and more confident – allowing you to conquer and crush anything that comes your way.

Sure, there will be some days when this will be more difficult than others, but when you have a great support team, you will feel as though you have a stepping stone to jump over the hurdle in front of you.

Molding Your Sober Lifestyle

Your sober life is what you make it. And, so is your road to recovery. Your treatment will allow you to work with your therapists and team to design a life that will lead you to success. Your old life is gone – the places you used to hang out, the habits you had, and the company kept. In order to remain sober, you are going to need to mold yourself a sober life.

What does that entail? It means that you will need re-learn how to do life, sober. Your old life led you down the path to addiction and brokenness. The new life you mold for yourself will keep you better equipped to remain sober and safe. You will have to learn to be strong and assertive, find new activities and hobbies that you enjoy, make new friends, and learn to appreciate another chance at life.

Recovery and sobriety go hand in hand, but there is so much more to recovery than just sobriety. Recovery is the entire process of getting sober – and remaining sober. But, it is a combination of all the elements that come together that help you find success in recovery.