Recent surgeon general figures estimate that 1 in 7 people will struggle with a substance issue during their life. There are unique reasons why each person deals with substance abuse. One common denominator is they often don’t know the benefits of being sober.
When you’re in the throes of addiction, you might not realize the impact your addiction has on your health, your friendships, and your career. If you’re in a situation where other people around you have a similar relationship to whatever substance you’re using, it’s hard to see an alternative. The first thing you need to do is to take a break from any situation that’s encouraging your behavior.
Once you get away from the triggers for your addiction, you’ll start to see the benefits of being sober. Here are five of the major benefits of being sober.
1. Relationships Will Get Better
When you’re making decisions influenced by an addiction, you could be hurting your friends and family without even realizing it. One of the benefits of being sober is that you’ll be able to treat the people who care about you better.
While you’re influenced by an addiction, you could choose nights alone with a substance or with people who use the substance over your loved ones. When you leave the substance behind, you might see the people you were using with didn’t care about your well-being as much as the people you avoided. During an addiction, you’ll avoid anyone who you feel is judging your addiction by asking you to quit.
If you have children, they will be impacted by your addiction no matter how you might try to keep them away. Children can be permanently traumatized by living with a parent who has a substance abuse problem. You can repair the damage done by getting sober now.
2. Your Memory Will Improve
Substance abuse can cause brain damage and affect your ability to remember important events and information. One of the benefits of being sober is that you’ll experience life from a more connected position.
If you’re employed during the period of your addiction, you could make mistakes, forget meetings, and miss appointments. This can damage your earning capability and the future of your career.
When you attend a wedding, birthday, or anniversary while sober, you get to remember every moment vividly. You can be present with the people you love the most and share the things they love with them.
When you remember their birthday or an important event, you’ll make the people around you happy. People appreciate when you make time for them and are sincerely excited about what’s going on in their lives.
3. You’ll Be in Better Shape
Exercising while you’re under the influence is far less effective than when you’re sober. Recovery time takes longer and so it’s harder to do the kinds of high-impact workouts that have an impact on your body.
If you’re abusing alcohol, you’re regularly dehydrating your body. Your body needs water to metabolize food and to refresh itself after a workout. Dehydration can cause you to pull a muscle or sprain a part of your body.
Using drugs and alcohol can be visible on your face. Some drugs can do damage to your lungs, your air passageways, and even your skin. Alcohol causes you to retain water and can make your face appear fatter than you would be otherwise.
One of the benefits of being sober is that it’s easier to get out of bed in the morning. You can wake up early to squeeze in a morning workout or have energy and time at night to make it to the gym. Living a Clean Life is equivalent to living a healthy life.
4. An Addiction Isn’t Free
No matter what your addiction is, kicking it will free up some extra cash. Even the money spent on cigarettes by the average smoker could pay for a weekend out of town.
If you don’t have all of the things you want to have out of life, money could be a factor. For people struggling with an addiction, it could be hard to pay for basic housing, food, and leisure costs. Kicking an addiction could show you just how much you could be doing with the money that you’re making.
Some people even go into an illegal or unethical trade in order to pay for their addiction. You won’t have to make those kinds of difficult decisions if you’re sober. Sobriety is free.
5. You’ll Have More Time in the Day
One of the hidden benefits of being sober is the amount of time that will suddenly be freed up in your day.
Drug and alcohol abuse takes time out of your day that you could be using to pursue your dreams. If you’ve always wanted to start a small business, pursue acting, or pick up an instrument, the time and money you save by being sober could be a windfall.
You might have a stack of books you’ve been meaning to read or a bunch of work that’s piled up over time.
Instead of putting it off, the extra time you’ll have allows you to prioritize what matters. You could have been putting off something that only takes a few minutes to deal with. Rather than putting up with that daily stressor, you can check those items off of your list and get on with your life.
The Benefits of Being Sober Are Huge
The newfound energy, balance, and outlook on your future will be a huge benefit to every aspect of your life. Being sober might seem daunting right now, but the work will pay off tenfold. Seek help if you need it and you’ll be surprised how willing your friends and family will be to get you through this tough time.
To stay on track, you should consider keeping a journal or starting a recovery blog. Check out our guide to starting an addiction recovery blog to make sure you connect with the audience who needs you.