01 Nov Things You Should Consider When Choosing a Sober Living
- Finding the Right Sober Living
- Are they affiliated with an Outpatient Program?
- The Importance of a Recovery Community
- Is it 12 Step Based?
- The Importance of Accountability
- Working in Sobriety
- Group Meetings
- Transfering Out; a Delicate Process
Once You’re Done With Detox:
After you are done with the first initial step of either detoxing or completing a residential treatment center, the next step is finding the right environment you will be able to stay sober at while you gain the tools necessary to live a good life in sobriety. Sober livings can be a bit tricky to find, but if you find the right one that best suits your needs it can change the rest of one’s life. Here are a few things that you or your loved one should look for in a quality aftercare program.
Finding the Right Sober Living
The first thing to look for is an excellent location. If one is looking for a sober living out of state, it would be a good idea to do some research on the different cities in that state. Maybe someone is looking for somewhere that has easy access to the beach, some kind of outdoors feel to it, or somewhere that has a vast array of activities to do. It will be different person by person, but this is something to look into. There are advantages to living in places like L.A. because not only is the young people’s sober community thriving, but there are also a vast amount of career opportunities and lifestyle choices available.
(see our blog post all about this: “LA; One of the Best Cities for Sobriety”)
Are they affiliated with an Outpatient Program?
The next thing you’re going to want to look at is what the program offers; the first place to start is that you are going to want to see if the sober living is affiliated with any outpatient programs are apart of the program. Outpatient (OP / IOP) can help a lot of the times with many different things such as processing different feelings that may come up with early sobriety and help work through different things on a group level. Most of the time IOP also includes groups, one on one therapy, as well as one on one counseling that can help you or a loved one out tremendously.
The Importance of a Recovery Community
A tight-knit of guys is very crucial if you want the sober living experience to be a good one. In early sobriety getting clean is hard, and it can feel pretty lonely. A brand new environment can be a bit of a shock so it will help a lot when as soon as you walk in the door you know that everyone wants you there, and everyone in the house wants to see you stay sober and are willing to help you out as much as possible. The last thing one would want is to be in a house full of guys that do not care about them and are too focused on themselves to help out the struggling newcomer. In my personal opinion, it is this that will help you out the most in rough patches when you enter the recovery house. An active recovery community can make all of the difference, so see if the program has alumni who actively participate because these individuals serve as a shining example of what you or your loved one can achieve through the process. Not to mention, that down the line participating as an alumn helps retain one’s sobriety. Both the size, and the involvement of the community are important things to consider, and these individuals ultimately have a positive impact on your or your loved one’s sobriety. One of our alumni wrote this piece about his experience with a recovery community: How A Recovery Community Changed My Life
While investigating the community, we encourage you to research the families involvement through the process; are their opportunities at play for the individual to rebuild their relationship under a new pretense of sobriety. I encourage you to read our blog “How Involved is Your Family in the Aftercare Process” for further information. We’ve found through our decades of experience that it is of the utmost importance to include the family in the recovery process when possible.
Is it 12 Step Based?
If the program is 12 step based, you also want to make sure that there is a stable way to get to and from meetings of alcoholics anonymous. Sure the structural sober living house aspect is essential, but it is also crucial to have or start to build a solid foundation in AA.
The Importance of Accountability
Accountability is also vital. It is not unusual to slip up in early sobriety since most of us have been living unproductively for years. When you do slip up, it is essential to have a group of peers that are there to point out where you messed up and where you could have done better for the future. Without this and proper guidance the chances of slipping up increase dramatically. It is crucial, even though it may be hard at first, to learn to hear about yourself and take in a message because, in the long run, it will help you or your loved one out a great deal.
Working in Sobriety
I recommend inquiring how entering or continuing a workforce is integrated into their facility. This is one of the last things that should be on the priority list since without being sober, everything else will go away. Regardless it is time to learn to be a functioning member of society. See if they will help you get a job, build your resume, and mentor you through the “job search” process.
Another thing that is helpful is a group meeting about once a week, so the house can all come together and keep everyone up to date of where everyone is at. I would contact the sober living director to see how the sober living flows and how much downtime there is. Are their chores to teach good work ethic? Are their policies in place to teach honesty and willingness? Of course, it is important to have some time to yourself, but these elements are crucial to create a solid foundation since too much downtime will start to produce negative thoughts that are not helpful to one’s sobriety.
Transfering Out; a Delicate Process
Finally, I encourage you to investigate how the program transfers people out who complete their facility. What is their procedure? More often than not, completion of an aftercare facility means the end of their help, but a quality program not only keeps their alumni involved, but it also transitions them out in a way that is conducive to their sobriety. Quality practices include, but aren’t limited to, moving out with other alumni, coming back to participate in groups, sponsoring guys in the program, and helping them with life skills through their transition.
If you look out for these things and do proper research, you should find the perfect sober living that will ensure not only sobriety but more importantly your overall happiness.
Call Us Today; We’re Here to Help
We hope that this helps you or your loved one find a facility that best suits their needs, feel free to contact us with any further questions.