I am not a person who enjoys a 7 day of the week workout. I cannot tell you that I have ever competed a workout challenge in my life. But what I can tell you is that in the past 7 months the more active I have stayed the better I have felt. Just get up and move! Go to the park and walk the track, grab a basketball and shoot some hoops, workout or try yoga once or twice a week. This doesn’t have to be hardcore workouts; you just gotta keep yourself moving every single day! Our bodies need it! Did you know…
Physical | Physical Alertness
www.wellandgood.com When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine
When we are depressed or suffering from addiction we can often forget to take care of our physical selves. We don’t eat right, sleep right, or anything that we should. That is why our hair falls out or we get dark circles under our eyes. You’ll notice acne begin to appear and your sick more often than not. We deprive ourselves of nutrition and wellness that we need to survive. These things eventually start to get to the point where we are nothing but a walking skin.
I know that I never want my body to ever feel or look that way again. Knowing how much I was depriving myself of I try to make up for that now. Over the past few months or so I can really understand and feel the difference in my body. I think that no matter what struggle your facing or addiction your recovering from being Physically Alert can help your overall general health.
Do you ever think about why so many people mediate? Why there are so many health guru’s? Why fitness products and supplements are almost a #1 world-wide seller? Because it feels good to feel good! Nobody really wants to walk around looking and feeling bad. So if we can start to just get up and get active we can always make sure that we have the foundation for success.
Basketball is so much fun! I am completely horrible at it but I love to play with TJ. He makes it look so easy and I’m over here looking like a hippo in yoga pants trying to do back flips! It just don’t look right. But I have fun while playing and after when my heart is beating and I can feel the endorphins going crazy I just love it! Yoga is another favorite of mine. Once, again I look ridiculous but I absolutely love to take part in it. There is a sense of freedom and relaxation once you get over not looking right. Your body just yearns for the activity and it feels fantastic after. I know most of anyone thinks that yoga is silly or hard but in reality its neither. It’s pretty relaxing and certainly fun.
You won’t ever catch me running or jogging for that matter because I am just not a runner but I do love to walk the track at the park especially because mine has a trail through the woods and that’s my soft-spot! Just being up and moving around instead of on my phone or in front of the TV junkin out on junk food makes you feel better!
I mention these activities because they are my own personal examples of b Physical Alertness. The more active I am the more alter my mind, body, and soul will be to the things in life that will try to bring me down. Staying alert isn’t always easy and if we are dumpy and frumpy we are more likely to let something slip by us and fall into the sadness or lose grip of our willpower. So I cannot tell you how important it is to stay alert and get active for not just your physical being but your mind & soul too! It is going to be hard at first but just push forward and know that once that initial pain is gone you will feel so much better!
WHEN THE BODY IS PHYSICALLY READY THERE IS NOTHING THAT WE CANNOT HANDLE MENTALLY…
This, in my opinion, is the second most important of the Foundation Four Self-Care in Recovery . Our minds take almost the biggest hit when we are in active addiction or suffering from an illness. It doesn’t matter if you’re a drinker, druggie, or self-harmed; guaranteed your mind has gotten some very overwhelming damage. So when we are doing DAILY self-care it is important to remember our mind and emotions. There isn’t a day that I don’t have to Reset & Refocus my mind to better myself for the day ahead or from the day that just ended. See, on some days I have to double down on this step and practice in the morning and in the evening.
Emotional | Reset and Refocus
What can you do to Reset & Refocus? Unclutter that brain of yours! Release the emotions that you felt, address the worries you have, andunderstandthatit is okay to feel the way your feeling. Our emotions can get us into trouble and cause us to do the unthinkable. Sofocus when you are practicing this and don’t try to do what works for someone else. You have to find what works for you. Keep a journal and write about what you have going on inside emotionally, describe what these emotions are making you feel and how it changes your train of thoughts, what fears to do you have? Affirmations and mediation are a life saver at times and can help us to begin to change the way we see life in general. As well, it can help us to learn and understand our emotions. Take the time to Reset your emotions by getting whatever you are feeling out of your mind and into the world. By this I mean write them down, record a video, talk to a trusted friend or therapist/coach, or simply say them out loud. Keeping our emotions inside can do more harm to us than if we let them be spoken.
Once you have Reset then you need to Refocus and get yourself back inline with your goals, routine, and choices. Know where you are in your life that day and what you have to do to make sure you stay on track. We have to stay focused on the task or items’ at hand to be able to be successful. Write down your goals for the day and add a note on the side on how you are going to get that goal done. Don’t overload yourself with goals or task. Keep it simple. Keep it focused. Remind yourself why you are doing the things you are doing, so that you can Refocus on your life one day at a time.
Our emotional damage that happens during the dark days often can leave us wrecked for years to come. Most of the time recovering addicts or those trying to heal from mental illness don’t allow themselves to feel the emotions that come with getting better. Like when they were using or struggling, they try to find a way of numbing or hiding their emotions only in amore rational way. But that is not a good idea at all and here’s why.
Hiding or numbing our emotions is what we were trying to do during the dark days.We did that by some sort of chemical- mind- altering- substance or “checking out” medication and thus lead us to total destruction of our lives. Now, how can on think it can be rational to hide or numb your emotions at all after that statement? Well, I’ll tell ya. It’s not! Like when we are trying to find the pieces of our souls, we need to embrace the emotions that we are currently feeling. Some days this will be easy because we will have something good happen or accomplish a goal of some sort and the emotions with that are good and beautiful. However, let’s face it. Not every day will our emotions going to be good and beautiful. There will be days that we cry for reasons that only we know, days that we are angry and just don’t want to deal with anyone, or days that all we can do is FEEL EVERY SINGLE BIT OF THE CONSEQUENCES OF OUR PAST ACTIONS! Since we are trying to live a healthy life we at times will try to find a “rational” way to hide or numb these feelings or emotions. But our foundation of recovery should not be to hide or numb anything any longer; that is how we will break our addictions and illnesses. We have to face our emotions one at a time and learn what helps us through those emotions in a healthy way.
So taking time each day to Reset your emotions and then Refocus your mind will allow you to create a habit of embracing what happens whether good or bad and then striving on to live your life healthy and mentally stable. Because if we cannot control our emotions than we will be subject to fall back into the darkness and lose all that we have worked for or all that we will have through recovery.
On the days that it is harder, don’t allow yourself to be alone. Find someone you can trust or find someone who will just hold you and let you be you facing whatever it is your feeling. Remember to find what makes you happy and allow yourself to feel no matter what that emotion is, because so long as you want to live a good life you will be able to. But you have to take time daily to Reset and Refocus your emotions. Some may need to turn up the radio in the car and cry! Some may need to put on their boots and hit the woods and scream at the top of their lungs. Or maybe they might need to go to church and cry out to God and find peace. However, it is that you face your emotions is up to you but it is most important to face them daily.
So today begins the first of our four part series: Foundation Four Self-Care in Recovery: Spiritual Soul Search. I want to begin this four part series with the part of Recovery Self-Care that I find to be the most important and the part that will heal you the most, but it also will take the most work. This is not something that will need to be done one time. This part as well as the other three parts of self-care need to be practiced on a daily basis and day by day you will begin to see and feel yourself getting better. After reading, I hope you will share your thoughts as well share this series of post with your friends and loved ones!
Spiritual | Soul Search
This is the very first and in my opinion the most important of Foundation Four Self-Care in Recovery. We know, that living in addiction is like you are living in Hell and it almost completely destroy our souls. Addiction and mental illness creates a theoretical darkness over our heads and in our souls that take the reins and controls every part of us. This is why it is so difficult to beat addiction or heal a mental illness. Our addictions or illnesses don’t just control our mind’s or bodies but also controls and damages our souls. We are by nature, spiritual beings and this will always be. So when addiction or illness takes the reins on your soul…….
soul /sōl/ noun 1. the spiritual or immaterial part of a human being or animal, regarded as immortal. 2. emotional or intellectual energy or intensity, especially as revealed in a work of art or an artistic performance
we become so damaged that it is sometimes seems un-mendable or irreparable. This is why I cannot stress enough how important Spiritual Self-Care is during our recovery journey. I have mentioned before that I call my active addiction days “the Dark Days” and that is so true because it is like darkness consumes our souls and destroys us. So once we begin to come out of active addiction and into recovery we have to mend the spiritual damage that has been done to us. Of course there has been emotional and physical and sensorial damage as well, but I will get to those later in the series. Now, I don’t want to force region on anyone nor do I want to offend anyone, but if you are a follower of my blog than you probably know at this point that I very much have began to walk my life with God’s plan. I believe that his spirit dwells within me and that he is the one that brought me out of my addiction. Now, that I have said that I want to say that when I am talking of Spiritual Self-Care I don’t necessarily mean that you need to find God. What I mean, is to find your soul and find yourself again. There are many different parts that make us who we are; like a very complex puzzle that was put together to make us who we are. When we are in active addiction or suffering from mental illness those pieces are strolled everywhere. Once we make the choice to start on recovery we have to set out to find all of those pieces that make up our own puzzle.
This is the part I call Soul Searching.
Because we have lost all of ourselves during our addiction it is going to be intensely difficult to find what we have lost, but it is possible. Once we get started on our journey of recovery we will havepieces of our lives begin to come togetherwithout us evenrealizing that this is happening and that is a beautiful thing. However, the part of our lives that won’tjust fall together is the healing of our souls and the understanding of who we are now, that we have been an addict and suffered from a mental illness and finally began to overcome the things we thought we could not. So how do you Soul Search? How do you start to find and understand yourself when you have been so lost for so long? Well, you have already started to find those two very parts when you have made the choice to get sober or not suffer any longer. Now, this is where life will get real intense incredibly fast. Because you have to face not only the part of your life where you were using or suffering, but you have to face the parts of your life BEFORE using as well. You need to identify what lead you to your addiction or illness. In an earlier post I made called “Reasons Why” I talked about this. We all have reasons why we began using in the first place. To truly recover we need to face these parts of ourselves first.
I recently spoke with a fellow blogger, Adriana, who also battled with addiction. She said that once she realized what the reason was that lead her to use, which she called “a hole in her soul,” she could then use it to help her recover after her addiction. She also noted that this reason dated back all the way to her childhood and I couldn’t agree more. We have won’t all have traumatic or bad childhood’s I know, but the point is that we have to identify and understand what originally damaged our soul in the first place. This is so important for our recovery and to have continuous sobriety for years to come. So when your starting this journey of recovery this needs to be your very first priority. Find your pieces to your soul. Heal your soul. Rebuild your soul.
How can we do that? Writing or creating this blog has had an incredible impact in finding my soul again. Writing all these post and really thinking, addressing, confessing, proclaiming, and so much more here on Sober Soul has given me the ability to find so many different pieces of my own personal puzzle. So again how do you find your soul? How do you soul search? You address your faults, your insecurities, your mistakes, your past! You identify them and then begin to heal from them. Now, I do this on my own. I have always been a person who prefers to deal with her own emotions and spirituality, but if that is not something you can do on your own then find a Life Coach or Sobriety Coach and they can help you to do so. My suggestions is to talk about your life, write about your life, forgive yourself, and remind yourself on a daily basis what you want for your life. We also need to think about who we want to be, what we want to do in our lives, how we want to put our mark on this world, and the ways to get there.
Really understanding what makes you spiritually happy will allow you to break that hold that the darkness has had on your soul. So slowly you will start to find the pieces of yourself that were lost during those dark days. Continuously search for a better you! Doing this daily will allow you to always have theopportunity to be a better version of yourself, do better things in life, and be more successful in life as well.
There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about my dark days and how it completely ruined my life. However, I remind myself that I am not a user any longer and that I have overcome that in my life and that makes me stronger. So many people don’t believe in themselves enough to stop or heal and recover. They think that they need a doctor or therapist or medication to do so and that is just not always true. There is a way to heal but you have to be willing to always put in the work that it will require. You will have to really understand who you are and what makes you happy. It is our minds and our souls to have control over and really understanding who we are is our responsibility. So practice Soul Searching everyday. Don’t ever give up on yourself and mental state of wellness. Always look for those pieces of yourself that are lost because we are the only ones that can see them and put them into the place that they belong (besides God).It won’t always be pretty nor will it ever be easy but I can guarantee you that it will be rewarding.
This is your life. This is your soul. This is your sobriety. This is your mental state of wellness. This is your recovery
Don’t let something or someone else control what is YOURS!