Are you just back home from going through a medically supervised alcohol detox recovery treatment? Have you spent the last while working hard in a long term drug rehab center? Sober living is all about knowing yourself. The most important thing you can do after therapy is to better understand the points of stress that trigger you. Just as important as knowing your triggers is building coping tools and starting to understand the ways you can effectively relieve stress without picking up a pipe or a wine glass.
This is a series highlighting different ways to cope with stress after alcohol detox and addiction recovery treatment.
Create meaningful art. Art is a really wonderful way to express your emotions, and to make something beautiful out of the story of what may feel to you to be a very broken life. Maybe sometimes you get so stressed out that you can’t even put words to your anxiety, or maybe the stress is at a point in your mind that it feels like you’ve said it all before and you just have nothing else to give. Well, maybe you need to stop trying to use words, and start using a different medium. There are so many methods of art and each offers a different kind of catharsis.
- Sketching, painting, coloring: these are great, methodical artistic methods. These are great kinds of art to do if you want to focus your brain somewhere away from the stressor for a little while.
- Sculpting, welding, installation pieces, dance: these are all very body oriented kinds of art. Sculpting involves a very tactile experience that can be calming and cathartic, bringing you in closer relationship with your body and in doing so, hopefully, calming your anxiety. Welding and some installation work for museums are strenuous and require a great deal of movement and focus of the body. Dance as well uses body movement to create an aesthetically moving piece of art. It has the added bonus of being good exercise and an incredible source of expression. That makes dance kind of the holy trifecta for stress relief.
- Mosaic: Have you been exposed to much mosaic? If you haven’t I highly suggest you google it. It’s a medium of art where the artist takes small pieces of broken pottery, or glass, or metal or whatever and place them together to create a picture. I’ve seen all kinds of mosaics made out of different materials. The potential for expression and meaning in this medium is endless. And if you think about it, it echoes your own journey. You’re living sober, picking up the pieces of a life complicated by addiction and then flipped upside down by recovery treatment at a drug or alcohol rehab facility. Use your time creating mosaics to tell your story and use the material you chose as a symbol of who you are and where you’re going.
If you learn anything from this blog series about coping with stress, I want you to remember to always have a plan, and keep track of what works for you. Know what you are going to do before the stress even hits you. Keep ideas in your back pocket for when you need a good and effective stress reliever. This will help you manage triggers and cravings and will keep you on the path to a life lived in sobriety.
Get in touch with our rehab specialists by calling (855) 441-2449.