How Routines Help You Stay in Recovery

Routines are integral to a healthy life regardless of how old you are. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by life’s many demands. Establishing a daily routine allows you to set aside time to take care of yourself, your loves ones, and accomplish tasks on your to-do list.

Why routines are important

During early recovery, finding new meaningful activities to participate in is essential to long-term success. Therefore, it is important to carefully consider the best ways in which you can structure your day so as not to renew old patterns, habits, and routines.

Paper with four step written routine

Developing a routine can help you manage anxiety and stress more effectively, improve productivity, foster better physical, emotional, and mental health, and maintain a strong recovery.

Apply structure

When you create a structure in your life you can reduce feelings of restlessness and boredom which can later trigger cravings. Creating structure, especially in alignment with your recovery goals, helps you to remain motivated and focused on recovery.

Positive routines can be a safety-net as new positive habits overwrite your old ones.

Here are examples of daily habits that can enrich your routine:

  • Regular wake-up and bed times
  • Starting your day in gratitude
  • Journaling, meditation, and prayer
  • Meal preparation
  • Spending time outdoors
  • Exercise
  • 12-step and Alumni Meetings
  • Social time
  • Exploring interests and hobbies

Make your support network part of your routine

The people who understand and support your recovery journey are essential to your short- and long-term success. Ensure you have a network of recovery groups and a community that you can be a part of. Whether it is regularly attending Renascent alumni meetings, or participating in other 12-step groups and recovery activities, these connections will help keep your recovery goals front-and-centre.

Your friends and family are also an important part of your network. Create space between yourself and those who do not support your recovery. Focus instead on those who understand why your recovery is the focal point of your life, including them in your recovery journey, where possible.

Developing healthy coping strategies

How we deal with stress can impact our overall well-being. When we adopt healthy ways of managing the challenges that life has in store for us, we are able to reap long-term benefits. Incorporating activities such as intentional stretching, exercise, meditation, mindfulness, and journaling into your daily routine are helpful ways of managing stress. Read more in our blog on Healthy Ways of Coping with Stress.

About the Authors

Renascent Staff
The staff at Renascent is passionate about helping people with substance addictions so they can reach their full recovery – with compassion, respect, empathy and understanding. Our staff includes our counsellors, all of whom have lived experience of addiction and recovery.