Working in a drug rehab center is not for the faint of heart. It is difficult work, often involving shifts and not the best pay. You often deal with people at their very worst. Clients are angry lost and very very frustrated. Often when a client does not succeed, people blame the drug rehab center. Addiction kills people. So working in drug rehab will sometime involve hearing about clients who later on passed away from an overdose or complications of drug and alcohol abuse.
Thankfully there are people who take all the above in stride and put their faith in the ability of people to change. They are able to see that most of the verbal complaints they hear are some person’s addiction talking, not them. Still I like to take the time to write a post once in a while to thank all the people working in the addiction and drug rehab field. It is very tough work. The rewards of seeing people change and come back to the real world and their families are truly amazing. They just come at a high price and only with special dedicated people.
The best part of going to drug rehab is that you have time to think. The worst part of drug rehab is you have time to think. Weird eh? When you head is in a good space thinking allows you to look at what you what to do with the rest of your life. You see a life filled full of possibilities and change.
When you are craving your drug and your old activities, every second of spare time in a drug rehab program seems like torture. That is why a lot of people getting sober head back to the gym and get in shape. While a good choice for a while, lifting weights and exercise does not totally engage your brain. You can do it on auto pilot so to speak, so it give the voice in your head time to “talk” you back into doing drugs or alcohol.
Another great choice to add to this is learning a new language on the computer with a program like Rosetta Stone. You do not need anyone else to help you. It forces to you use more of your brain and focus than just working out. You can’t thing about drugs and learn to pronounce new words at the same time. So why not do your self a favor? In 90 days you can become sober, become fit, and learn to speak a new language. All in all not a bad deal.
I get that quality help in not cheap. I get we are a society that believes you need to untimatey take care of yourself. But for the most part, private drug rehab centers are just too expensive. I am not saying they are not worth it. I am not saying people are getting rich off of the backs of those with drug and alcohol problems. I am saying drug rehab treatment costs more than most people with addiction and their families can afford. So it does not help them. So we need a more cost effective solution for addiction. We need to quit blaming the addicts. We need to stop blaming the government. We need to look at the problem with real basic research. We need more phd’s doing their thesis on addiction. Putting people away for 90 or more days is just too expensive for far too many addicts.
Sumertime is the time of parties and barbeques at the lake. This means that the social pressure to drink and use drugs may be even more present than at other times of the year. Other than Christmas, it may be the toughest time of the year to stay sober. No body wants to feel left out. However, there are things you can do and actually be appreciated for not drinking. Be the designated driver or boater. Make it OK and and be thanked for you sobriety. Hang around earlier in the afternoon and day. Leave before the heavier drinking and substance abuse occurs. Once people start to get high they will feel the need to convince you that you need to “loosen” up a bit. Sumertime like all social situations, can be handled soberly, as long as you plan, and stay within your boundaries.
The sole purpose of drug rehab is to change in the areas of your life that are not supporting what you ultimately want from life. If you really want to change you have to find a way to measure it, and then have an objective way to monitor it. The obvious thing that people count in drug rehab is the number of days sober, without a drink of alcohol or drug usage. The problem with this is that it is an all or none measurement. Hard to see growth and improvement with.
There are other things to measure. A depression index or mood index once a week will be very useful. As you progress in a drug rehab program your mood will lift and become more positive. External proof of this will be very beneficial on the days when you feel like nothing has changed.
You can measure your levels of fitness as your health returns. If you start working out, weight, heart rate and blood pressure can be measured at regular intervals to again show you the progress.
You can measure the number of times a day you are frustrated, or angry. As you work on developing your life skills you will see positive improvement in these areas. A drug rehab program is not just being locked away from the temptation of drugs and alcohol for 90 days. Learning how to change and how to monitor it is one of the most valuable skills you will learn in a drug rehab center.