Nothing can stifle your spirit as much as feeling as if you don’t have control. In recovery, you learn you only control your actions. You’re powerless over other people, places, and things. Powerlessness is both a good and bad thing. You can’t be responsible for other peoples’ actions. You have to be patient like everyone else. But it can feel spirit-busting in many cases. So how can you continue to feed your spirit during the era of COVID-19?
As a person in recovery, you’ve probably gone through a lot in life. It may seem unfair to think that you’ve gone through all much just to sit around and wait for the future to re-start. COVID-19 threw everyone’s plans into a loop.
You’re right – it’s not fair. But we’ve all got to make the best of it, and it’s essential to nurture yourself in the process. You deserve to take care of yourself – and that’s what recovery is all about!
Nurturing and Lifting Your Spirit During COVID-19
No one has control over COVID-19 and all of the small inconveniences and tragedies it has caused and continues to cause. However, if you’re staying sober, you’re part of the solution, especially if you’re following health guidelines.
By nurturing your spirit and exercising self-care, you can get through this period (and, yes, this too shall pass) and come out stronger on the other side. Take time to take care of yourself. You must be gentle with yourself sometimes.
Here are 15 great ways to nurture your spirit:
- Make a playlist of songs that inspire you or remind you of good times. Listen to them to lift your mood. (No songs that remind you of using or drinking!)
- Help others. Go through clothing or household items you have and contact Goodwill or another organization. If you live with others, organize to get this done together.
- Go for a bike ride away from traffic so you can enjoy the scenery.
- Take a half-hour at the beach to just sit in the sun and listen to the waves.
- Practice mindfulness wherever you are at least once a day. Set a phone alarm to remind yourself, then find a spot where you can be relatively alone.
- Talk to somebody who cares about you every day. This call can be to a relative, your sponsor, your best friend, or anyone in recovery. If you think nobody cares about you, then go to a meeting. Introduce yourself as a newcomer.
- Practice your talents daily. Sing in the shower, write in a journal, or draw in a textbook if those are things you’re good at doing or just enjoy.
- Keep a gratitude list of at least five things you’re grateful for each day.
- Practice affirmations. If you have low self-esteem, choose a few compliments to give yourself this week. Think of at least three things you’re good at, and turn them into affirmations. For example, “I am kind to others and always try to help.”
- Do something kind for somebody every week. For example, give a gift card to a homeless person or do the grocery shopping for a family member. Don’t ask for or expect anything in return.
- Learn to cook your favorite food so you can save money and enjoy it any day of the week.
- Take your dog to a park to play fetch. (If you don’t have a dog, play in your living room with the cat.
- Get at least one intense, sweaty workout each week. Intense cardio can help your body lower your blood pressure, boost your metabolism, and regulate stress.
- Go for a short walk every day at the same time to wind down the day. Pay attention to the world around you, and allow your breathing to slow down. Try to stay in the moment as you walk.
- Escape with your favorite type of book, whether it’s suspense, Steven King, or a manual teaching you how to code MSQL.
Nurturing your spirit means taking care of yourself and feeding the parts of your soul that are creative and hopeful. Take some time every week, really getting to know yourself and learning to enjoy your life without using substances. There is a lot to explore about yourself and the world, so take the opportunity to slow down during this period of time. COVID -19 has slowed the world down, but there are still many opportunities to learn to enjoy life without substances. You just have to start reclaiming the time you have to make it yours. Learn how to enjoy yourself.
Getting Help for Addiction
If you or somebody you love needs help with a substance use disorder, we’re here for you. We can offer a safe, clinically supervised detox with minimal withdrawals. We’re still doing intake with policies that have adapted to the era of COVID-19. Please call us to learn more about our programs and how we can help you get started on the road to recovery. We’re available at 619-363-4767.