15 Benefits of Staying Sober
By Cassidy Webb
Originally published on New Directions
If you are new to this whole sobriety thing and are struggling with the idea of never drinking or drugging again – that’s okay! Coming from a former addict, I totally get it. Everybody has their own journey. However, life really does get better if you stay sober. Here are 15 benefits of staying sober.
1. Your life becomes less chaotic
You don’t have to live in constant turmoil anymore because you’re not worried about getting money, getting drugs or alcohol, and then lying or manipulating to cover up your behaviors. You finally get a chance to sit still and relax.
2. You sleep better
Alcohol abuse is disruptive to sleeping patterns because it suppresses sleep, not permitting a restorative, good night’s rest. Though you may have trouble falling asleep when you first get sober, you will soon sleep peacefully through the night and feel more rested the next day.
3. You feel healthier
Substance abuse has profound effects on the body. In sobriety, you aren’t putting toxic chemicals in your body, so you will actually have more energy and feel more alert and focused! Not to mention the fact that your internal organs get to take a break from working overtime to process the drugs and alcohol.
4. You look better
Do you have sunken in cheeks, red patches, or bad acne? Good news – in sobriety, your skin actually improves! Without nasty, toxic chemicals in your body, your complexion will improve tremendously and you will gain weight back to your face, making you look beautiful and healthy again!
5. Your memory improves
We all have nights we don’t remember while in addiction, but shortly after detox, your memory will rapidly begin to improve. No more worrying about what you did last night – your memory will become sharp and as good as new!
6. Your mental health improves
Sleep, diet, and overall health are directly correlated with the status of your mental health. As your lifestyle improves, you will find your emotions more stable and manageable. You will find yourself having less mood swings along with increased happiness.
7. You worry less
When you are sober and doing the right thing, the worry of getting in trouble with others or getting caught by the cops disappears. You’re sober, you have a job, you are being honest with others, you have a roof over your head, you aren’t worried about going into withdrawals – what’s there to worry about anymore?
8. You actually have money
When you aren’t spending every penny earned on drugs or alcohol, you will be surprised how quickly your savings adds up! It is a wonderful feeling not to worry about living paycheck to paycheck and being able to have savings for emergencies.
9. You get to be a part of your family
Regardless of the harms you have done, your family loves you and will forgive you in time. It is a great feeling to be with family on holidays and special occasions without causing them to worry about your drug or alcohol use. They will be able to rely on you and trust you, and since you have money, you can even buy them gifts for their birthdays!
10. You form deep connections with others
Friendships made in sobriety are like no other. These friends understand exactly what you are going through because they have been there too. They will love and support you unconditionally. There is something about friendships in recovery that is magical.
11. You gain long term rewards
Hard work pays off. If you put in the work to be sober and happy, you will be sober and happy. You will be able to go to class and study for school in order to further your education. You will be capable of holding a job, allowing you to move up in your career. You will develop a profound appreciation for people, places, and things.
12. You get to embark on new adventures
You have the ability to try new things, travel to new places, and develop a passion for life after addiction. Since you will no longer rely on substances to survive each day, you will finally have the opportunity to thrive in life. There is nothing holding you back. Go climb that mountain, go snorkeling at a coral reef, go visit a foreign country! What are you waiting for?
13. You grow spiritually
Spiritual growth consists of removing obsolete or negative habits and thoughts from your life. Mindful meditation is a great way to grow spiritually because it relaxes your mind and aids in coping with feelings of anxiety and stress. It is a free, easy to do activity that promotes healing and spiritual growth by connecting your mind, body, and spirit.
14. You find your purpose in life
There is somebody out there who is hopeless and feels like they cannot stay sober. You may not know it at the time, but your story is the only story they will hear. Your experience, strength and hope, is going to help somebody stay sober. You have the ability to change lives.
15. You learn to love yourself
By staying healthy, having new experiences, building relationships, and helping others, you will begin to truly love yourself. You will treat your body and mind with a gentle respect, as you have been blessed with a new, sober life. For many of us, we have spent too much time hating ourselves. Being able to love who we are, for all of our imperfections, is nothing short of a miraculous gift in sobriety.
Cassidy Webb is a 24 year old avid writer from South Florida. She enjoys hiking, spending time at the beach, and playing with her two nieces. Her passion in life is to help others recover from addiction by sharing her experience, strength and hope.
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