Choosing the right friends after recovery is important to your overall healing and successful readjustment, but you knew that already. During treatment and once you’ve started counselling in a sober living home, you’ll be told how important it is to find new friends and leave behind the negative influences you had in the past. And of course, that’s great advice. But how do you go about it?
The problem with choosing the right friends after recovery is that most recovering addicts don’t know how to spot a good friendship anymore. You’re a bit rusty, a little out of practice, but you’re not out of the game. Making friends is a skill that can be learned, and the counsellors at your sober living home can help too. You conquered addiction, making friends is the next step and you’ve got this.
Understand Your Past Friendships
For most recovering addicts, past friendships were based on a similar goal: to abuse substances, to avoid painful emotions and to find comfort in a miserable situation. Not anymore, enough is enough; it’s time to find good friends who will be there for you in all the right ways.
Now, the question is, how do you find the right friends once you have started recovery? Keep these 4 things in mind!
- Think of the qualities and interests you would look for in a friend.
You’re probably making new friendships at the sober living home and that’s because you have a shared experience and you’re spending time together. Apply that same logic to sober friendships outside of the sober living home.
Make a list of your interests. Even if it’s just one interest right now, write something down. Now look for places where people who share those interests meet, go to those places, join those clubs, mingle.
The start of any relationship begins with common interests.
- Look at potential friends’ strength and weaknesses.
Choosing the right friends after recovery requires some testing. Look at potential friends and learn to spot their strengths and weaknesses. Ideally you want to find strengths in others that you don’t possess yourself and avoid weaknesses in others that you have yourself.
Build on strengths.
- Match the characteristics of potential friends with activities and interests you would share.
You could be getting along with someone but realize you share no common interests, that’s fine. Try some of the activities they enjoy, be open to new experiences. If you share a bond, then there’s reason to expect you might enjoy activities that they enjoy as well.
Try new things.
- Avoid peers who are involved with drugs, gangs, or breaking the law.
This going without saying, but it still must be said: Avoid people that will cause potential problems for you. You don’t want any more headaches, no more living on the other side of the law, no more trouble. Avoid people who attract trouble.
Above all, remember that you have a say in who you decide to let into your life, don’t forget that. This is a fresh start, take full advantage of it.
Looking for a sober living home? Call Boca House for Men for more information.