6 Ways to Learn to Love Yourself in Recovery

6 Ways to Learn to Love Yourself in Recovery

Self-love in recovery can be a challenge, but it’s part of the process of overcoming all the complicated self-esteem hurdles that can come with the early stages of recovery. Before you can love anyone else, you have to truly love yourself!

1. Look in the mirror, honestly. Not just when you’re looking and feeling your best, but when you first wake up, before you’ve gotten dressed, in all your must vulnerable moments. To get confident with what you truly look like, start appreciating all the ways in which you are naturally perfect. Maybe your eyes are an amazing colour? Perhaps you’ve got an awesome dancing booty? Whatever you look like, start acknowledging and appreciating that you look great, just the way you are. 

2. Let go of shame. When you’ve made mistakes, do what you can to correct them, and move on. If you find you’re making the same type of mistake repeatedly, try to figure out why you’re doing it, but the same way you would forgive somebody else, forgive yourself. And remember that a lot of mistakes are also a chance to learn; what can you do better next time?

3. Pay attention when you do something you’re proud of. Acknowledge the moments you catch yourself doing the right thing for yourself or for others, and recognize that being a good person is part of who you are. You’re the kind of person who holds doors for others, who eats healthily, who volunteers, whatever!

4. On that note, volunteer! Spending some time focusing on other people and their needs is a great way to get some perspective and take a break from working on your own recovery. When you’re done, you’ve got one more thing to pat yourself on the back for. 

5. Practice self care. Doing little things to take care of yourself every day is a great way to build a habit of treating yourself the way you deserve to be treated. For example, you might want to get in a quick workout every day, drink a certain amount of water, eat a proper breakfast, or sleep a minimum number of hours. While you’re still building these habits, use a habit tracker app to monitor your progress.

6. Celebrate your successes! Whenever you achieve something special or unusual, make a point of celebrating in some way. Did you push yourself to go rock climbing when you were pretty sure you’d be terrified the whole time? Did you pay off a credit card or finish a course or get a new job, or meet some other personal goal? Tell a friend about your accomplishment, and let them shower you with praise! However you choose to celebrate, be sure to also add your achievement to a list of reasons you’re awesome. 

Be More Than All Talk — 7 Easy Ways To Be An Action Hero!

Be More Than All Talk — 7 Easy Ways To Be An Action Hero!

It’s Bell Let’s Talk Day, but all we can think about is action! Opening up the conversation about mental health is important, of course, but in the work Team Renascent does we know that recovery is more than just talk: it’s about action.

Taking action in support of mental health and addictions can make sure that someone else is able to reach the recovery you have found, and it’s also a fulfilling way to keep your own recovery on track.

Here are just a few ideas for how you can be action hero this coming week:

1. Sign up as an alumni contact.

Our alumni contacts bridge that daunting gap between leaving treatment and achieving stable recovery at home. As an alumni contact, you will be put in touch with someone leaving treatment who lives in your community. You’ll meet them, take them to a local meeting, introduce them to program contacts, and generally help them find their footing in your area’s recovery community. It’s an important job and an amazing way to give back.

2. Become one of Renascent’s monthly donors.

Our monthly donors can choose exactly how much they give every month, so if $9 a month works for you, great! When you give the gift of recovery, you help us keep our promise of never turning anyone away from drug and alcohol addiction treatment because of money. Over the course of a year, your monthly donations will accumulate into an impressive annual gift, and you’ll get a tax receipt for the full amount.

3. Go to an alumni meeting.

When you go back to the house where you found recovery, you’re not only giving yourself an amazing reminder of how far you’ve come, you’re also showing everyone currently in treatment what’s up ahead. If you aren’t feeling like a shining example of recovery this week, go anyway. When you share your struggles, hope, and experience, you’re doing everyone a favour.

4. Review us on Facebook and/or Google.

When you let others know how and where you found recovery, you’re helping them find it for themselves. This is probably the easiest way to spread the word! On Facebook, go to facebook.com/RenascentCanada and submit a review. (While you’re there, “Like” us to connect with the Renascent community and get resources, support, etc.) On Google, search for your house (Munro, Punanai, Sullivan, or Wright) and on the results page, you’ll see an option on the right hand side to write a review.  

5. Go to a meeting and introduce yourself to a newcomer.

Remember your first meeting? How nervous you were? How weird everything felt? A friendly face saying “hey” can be the difference between running out the door and never looking back, or coming back next week and finding a supportive community for life.

6. Volunteer.

Being of service is a key factor of long-term recovery — you’ve got to give it to get it! Whatever you’re good at, from gardening to computers, there’s a charity or non-profit organization who could use your help. (We might even have some opportunities for volunteers at our suite during the upcoming ORC.) Apply to be a volunteer today!

7. Email your MP and/or MPP.

Members of Parliament and Provincial Parliament are responsible to you. If you think more government money should go toward funding addiction treatment programs, let them know! They work for you, and need to hear from you to know what their constituents care about.

Now celebrate your action hero status with a little dance party!

Best Non-Alcoholic Cocktails for the Holidays

Best Non-Alcoholic Cocktails for the Holidays

Looking to get into the spirits without getting into the spirits?

We’re here to help.

Here are some of our favourites from years past:

Cranberry-Apple Cider Punch
(Modified from here)

A fizzy and refreshing taste of the season that’s super easy to make! In a punch bowl or large pitcher, stir together:

1 litre of unsweetened apple cider, chilled
2 cups cranberry juice cocktail, chilled
2 cups ginger ale, chilled
1 can (12oz.) frozen orange juice concentrate

When serving, add some orange slices, berries, or red and green apple slices for garnish. For extra festive cuteness, use frozen cranberries instead of ice cubes.

Hot Not Toddy
(Modified from here)

Get toasty without getting toasted.

Get your measuring spoons out and get these things into a mug for a single serving: 

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (grated, or 1 cinnamon stick)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (ground)
  • 1 teabag (your choice, but we love this with Chai)

Pour hot water over it and give it a good stir. Add a lemon wedge if you’re feeling fancy.

Blood Orange Italian Sodas
(Modified from here)

This combination of sparkling water, coconut cream, and blood orange syrup feels like a grownup creamsicle. 

To make the blood orange syrup, you’ll need:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • the juice of 3 blood oranges
In a medium-sized sauce pan, add the sugar and water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in the blood orange juice. 

To serve, pour ½ cup of sparkling water in a glass, followed by 2 or 3 tablespoons of the syrup and a ¼ cup of coconut cream, and garnish.

Definitely Not Gin & Tonic

Not into the sweet stuff?

Try mixing Campari Crodino (get it at any nice grocery store) or a few dashes of non-alcoholic bitters (Cocktail Emporium in Toronto has a selection) with soda or tonic water to get the taste of an adult drink without any of the danger.