An act of kindness is still an act of kindness, no matter how small.
Approaching the holidays while you’re still recovering from an addiction can be overwhelming, and the temptation to withdraw and self-isolate can be strong — those instances are when it’s more important than ever to remain connected to your community though.
Those who are in addiction recovery often struggle with feeling as if they don’t have much to contribute or give others, but there is always something we can do for someone else, no matter our life’s circumstances.
If you’ve been wondering about how you can get involved with or give back to the recovery community, there’s no time like the present to start practicing goodwill to your fellow man.
In this article, we’re going to share with you the top four ways that those in addiction recovery can give back to the rest of the recovery community during the holiday season.
Why is giving back important?
Giving back to the community is a great way to remind you of how far you’ve come in your recovery journey, as well as provide hope, love and service to those around you. Giving back to the recovery community can be particularly powerful, especially coming from someone who has been or is still in the recovery community themselves.
Some additional benefits of giving back include:
- Broadening your perceptions of the world
- Gaining a unique sense of purpose and accomplishment
- Meeting new people and building positive relationships
- Increasing your confidence and self-esteem
- Decreasing symptoms of depression and anxiety
- Improving people’s perceptions of the world
By giving back to the recovery community, you can be a light to those still working their way through the darkness. Even if you’re still a bit in the darkness yourself, the fact you’re thinking about others and contemplating how to give back is proof you have the potential to be a beacon.
Giving back during the holidays
Giving back during the holidays is an especially powerful time to reach out to, connect with and serve the recovery community.
This time of year often presents a series of challenges to those still actively in addiction recoveries, such as stressful family dynamics and increased opportunities to relapse. By giving back during the holidays, you strengthen your own recovery as well as the recovery journeys of all those you serve in the recovery community.
Giving back to the community
There are countless ways to give back to the recovery community, and by venturing out and trying different kinds of service and volunteer work, you can find methods you genuinely enjoy.
We’re going to share with you four of the simplest, most effective ways to give back:
1. Volunteer at local organizations
Depending on where you feel called to serve in your community, there is usually an abundance of local charities and organizations that can always use more volunteers.
You can volunteer your time at soup kitchens, and homeless shelters, or you can sponsor a family with gifts and food, and so much more.
2. Help host (or host yourself) a sober party
While some people in recovery can attend holiday gatherings and parties despite the presence of drugs and alcohol, others are not yet mentally ready to be in such an environment, or simply don’t want to put themselves in a position to be tempted.
It’s not at all uncommon for leaders and larger organizations in the recovery community to host sober social gatherings, but the options can be limited, depending on the size of your city and how active the addiction recovery community is. This often leads to individuals hosting their own sober parties, which you can either offer to help out with or even host your own.
3. Offer to be someone’s sponsor
Whether you’re still in a support group or would be interested in rejoining one, offering to be someone’s sponsor is, by far, one of the best ways to directly give back to the recovery community.
By sponsoring someone, you’ll be able to help your mentee navigate the challenges of the early stages of sobriety from an “I know where you’ve been” approach, and you’ll be a concrete example of the fact they can achieve sobriety too. As a bonus, you’ll be consistently reminded of how far you’ve come, and why you’re working so hard to stay sober.
4. Speak to groups about recovery
If you feel comfortable speaking in front of groups (or want to channel some bravery and do it anyways), consider reaching out to different organizations and offering your testimony.
Whether this is direct to recovery groups and you’re speaking to individuals actively combatting an addiction, or in a more preventative way, such as speaking to college students or at high school lectures, you have the wisdom to share. It might not always feel like it, but you do.
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Silver Ridge Recovery is a premier rehabilitation center that’s nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina. Specializing in mental health and substance abuse recovery , our highly experienced staff is committed to supporting you every step of your healing journey.
Send us a message or call our office today to learn more about the specific ways in which we can help you or someone you love.