Often in my work with clients at the AToN center it starts to dawn upon them that sobriety is more than just “not drinking or using.” Initially, many people believe that they will be able to live the exact same lifestyle that they were engaged in beforehand. With some reflection and feedback they start to realize how many aspects of their life were touched by their use.
If previously your family occasions involved drinking, how would that change if you are not? If you previously would “always drink” at concerts or sporting events, what would it be like to attend these sober? If your business meetings are frequently held in bars, how are you going to find a way around being exposed to that kind of trigger?
The good news is that while these issues are part of a stressful transition, there is hope in managing each of them effectively. You can develop the confidence to stay sober and communicate this assertively to your loved ones. You can learn that concerts and sporting events are even more fun to attend when you are paying attention to the show and you actually remember what happened.
You may also find that your co-workers are more impressed with your improved productivity and clarity of thought when you return to work. Sobriety can feel intimidating at first but with proper care and effort, it can lead to a depth and meaning you previously could not imagine.