It sounds easy, right? Give yourself enough time to heal, grow and rebuild your life and everything will be OK. After all, what could be easier than just waiting things out? Those of us in recovery are routinely told to give ourselves plenty of time in both the long and short term, even if it’s making sure we have enough throughout the day so our regular obligations don’t get overwhelming or seeing the big picture and realizing that we can’t heal overnight. The reality is that many of us are uncomfortable with the latter, because we aren’t used to this level of inactivity.
Recovery gives us a renewed sense of purpose and it can be very easy to try and channel that purpose toward a variety of endeavors that move beyond the initial stages of our recovery. This can often lead to us biting off more than we can chew and inviting undue stress into our lives. As tempting as it may be to resume a full-time work or school schedule, or to enter long-term relationship, or make any other life-changing decisions, we have to make sure we’re ready. We have to establish what we can, and should, expect from ourselves. Our lack of patience can very easily steer us toward relapse.
In the end, only we can establish our readiness level to take on more of life’s challenges and embrace more of its rewards. However, it’s a good idea to listen to the advice of those that truly have our best interests a heart (our family, therapists, friends at meetings, etc.). This objective insight can allow us to see points of view that we might not have previously considered. Above all, we benefit from remembering that recovery is a lifelong endeavor, and that our sobriety must come first. We should also remember that once get a firm grasp on our long-term recovery routine, everything else may fall into place in other areas of our lives.