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Back to the Real World

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Reintegrating with society and a social calendar that is filled to the brim can bring out both the best and the worst of us. Some of us will be treading carefully, while others will be hitting things hard. If you’re part of the latter group, then it might be time to talk: read about the symptoms of alcohol addiction and drug addiction, or contact us to discuss affordable addiction treatment.

The last two years have been tough for most of us, let’s face it. There have been pressures and loneliness, worries and heartbreak, and now we are finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. It is pretty easy to throw away all cautions and go off the rails. 

But, getting out there needn’t be all or nothing. We can create a state of balance that has a positive impact on our minds and our bodies, as well as our social lives. Whether you’re in addiction recovery or not, here are some tips for re-entering the real world, including more frequent social get togethers.

Making a plan

First of all, make a plan. A social calendar that you genuinely enjoy, can commit to, and you know where you’re going, who with, and when. It is really easy to get caught up in the offers and the parties, the outings and the events, so much so that you end up with too many plans, all fuelled by the same kind of needs and wants. 

There is fun to be had, and time to make up for, of course, but social activities can be planned out and thoughtful, as opposed to night after night at the pub or at house parties. 

Rebuilding your life 

Understand that this is an act of rebuilding and notice the things that you don’t want in your life any more or that you want less of. There has been such a shift in the times and how we socialise that maybe some of the things you used to do two years ago actually don’t serve you any more. It isn’t selfish to put yourself first, so rebuild with thought and care.

Changing habits 

This is also your chance to change those habits. If you were the first one there and the last one to leave, maybe that doesn’t have to be so anymore. Think about the things you want and whether that is a Sunday morning stroll instead of the three day hangover, and if you want to have more meaningful conversations than random chats at 3AM. Habits are a series of decisions that you make over and over again until they become part of you and your life, you always have the power to change them. 

It might not be easy to change these things, or maybe it will be easier as we have been without them for so long. But, make conscious decisions on how you want to re-enter the world and how you want to live your life. 

It doesn’t have to be all-in

You don’t have to go wild and you don’t have to have drink and drugs to fuel a good time. If you associate those things with a good time, that doesn’t have to be the case. If you’re not addicted, then you should be in control and you can choose what works for you. A sober Saturday night might just be the most incredible one yet: why not try it and find out? If you’re addicted, you’ll find it hard or impossible to control your drinking or drug use. If this is you, and the consequences are piling up, then get in touch with Help Me Stop to talk about online or face-to-face rehab for addiction.

The real world 

It is also worth thinking about what your everyday real world looks like. The places you go and the people you see, and whether or not you want to keep up those habits and traditions. Put yourself first and shape the real world you are living in to be one that works for you. 

Symptoms of drug addiction 

Nightlife and drug addiction have long gone hand in hand, and what may start as something recreational can easily take a more sinister turn. If you are heading into the real world once again, here are some signs of addiction you may spot in your friends or in yourself. 

They may have a reduced interest in conversations and may spend more time in the bathroom than at the table or on the dance floor. Look out for them being gone for frequent or extended periods of time, and whether they seem to be under the influence of something stronger. 

Peer pressure can also play a part in drug addiction and drug use, which can be heightened and escalated when going out during the evening. Look out for this and be mindful of the language that is being used around drugs, and alcohol too. Respect boundaries and look after each other. 

As we return to the real world, make sure you are entering it in a way that works for you, that respects your boundaries and your growth over the last two years. Also, be kind to yourself and those around you after what has been an incredibly taxing time. 

If you are concerned about your own drug use and addiction, or that of a friend, please get in touch with the team at Help Me Stop. We will listen without judgement, advise on affordable addiction treatment, and offer help and support where we can.

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