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How To Engage in Self Care

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD By August 31, 2018

It can be difficult to get back from our top rated drug rehab center in New Jersey, and allow yourself the necessary self care to succeed. For some reason much of our culture looks at the idea of caring for yourself as a simple excuse for self indulgence. But if you consider what drug and alcohol addiction is, an effort at self medication or self soothing, it becomes clear that you are going to have to replace the substance abuse with some kind of healthy self care.

 

Basic Self Care

People talk about “self care” a lot these days. When you ask a friend about their weekend, it wouldn’t be uncommon to hear them say “oh, i took a couple of self care days. I really needed that.” People use this sort of terminology when referring to having a spa day, or spending a day alone reading, but it is also notable that self care should start with your basic everyday needs first and foremost.

  • Hygiene – keeping your body clean and safe will make sober living significantly more successful for you. When someone is anxious and depressed, or suffering from mental health complications it can be difficult for them to get out of bed, much less get in the shower. It can be humiliating but it may still be difficult. As you start to rebuild your life now that you’re back from Discovery Institute, try to maintain a consistent hygiene routine.
  • Diet – A balanced diet with meals scheduled regularly throughout the day is vital for your self care both physically and mentally.
  • Exercise – Your body needs to move to survive. When you stay too stagnant your skeletal and muscular systems will start to put you on notice. You’ll notice joints aching and even a general feeling of discomfort, if you don’t pay attention to caring for your body. Even a ten minute walk at lunch will pay off for your general wellbeing.
  • Rest – If you don’t rest your cognitive functions will suffer. Your brain will fire less quickly, and your memory will become significantly less reliable.

 

Discovery InstituteAdvanced Self Care

After your basic needs are met you should make sure you schedule some more luxurious self care for yourself every once in a while. Here are some ideas for advanced self care.

  • Take a trip – Plan a road trip up the coast, or some time in a cabin in the woods. If you’re feeling flush, buy plane tickets to another country and consider traveling alone. Traveling alone will challenge your self care skills and will also give you control over your own experiences.
  • Going to a Movie – Some people love to go to the movies, some even find it freeing and more relaxing to go to the movies alone. Going alone may take away any perceived expectation of a companion that you feel any particular way about the movie. You can laugh, cry, love, or hate the film without fear of judgement. If you love film, try going to a movie alone, it might be your favorite new form of self care.
  • Go Golfing or Play a Sport – Many people enjoy golfing as a means of relaxation. The casual nature of the green helps them take a break from the stressors of life and enjoy a few hours of calm. Being active and, especially, getting outside can bring your body and mind into alignment.

Article Reviewed by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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