There’s something special about having a good friend in your life. You know that he or she is not going to be judgmental. You know that he or she is going to be there for you if you call for help. You know that you’re going to be there for your friend when he or she calls. There’s a mutual respect, a kindness that you both show one another, and best of all, you can laugh with each other over the silliest things. When you have a friend in your life, everything seems easier.
But when you’re in recovery, perhaps the idea of finding a drug-free, alcohol-free friend seems impossible. How are you going to find someone who doesn’t use or drink? If you’ve been used to a lifestyle of drinking and getting high, and all of those you know have been doing that for most of their adult life too, then it might seem difficult to find a friend who is healthy and happy.
There are many opportunities in life to meet someone. There are a number of ways that you could find a friend who has similar interests and the same view in life. The following is a list of ways to meet new people:
Volunteer – Typically, those who volunteer their time to an organization are those who care about a cause, those who want to devote their efforts towards a particular organization or mission. It’s likely that when if you were to volunteer, you might meet someone who is drug and alcohol free. Furthermore, when you volunteer you will have the opportunity to develop your occupational and social skills.
Join a club – If you have an interest in a certain type of books, for example, or in a particular kind of sport, then joining a club with others with the same interest would be a great way to make new friends. A sports team is another way to meet new people who enjoy the same physical activities. The paper, sites online, and postings in your community might provide details about clubs to join.
Rekindle old friendships – Perhaps you have some friendships from many years ago or from an earlier part of your life when you weren’t drinking or using drugs. Often people welcome a connection from an old friend. They want to hear how you’re doing and they want to share about their own life as well. And if you’ve lost touch with friends, perhaps even from high school, you can browse sites like Facebook to find them. Or you can search the yellow pages online. If you’re determined, you can reconnect with old friends as a way to bring new and healthy friendships into your life.
Make friends with co-workers – If you’re working and you appreciate those you work with, then perhaps you want to find a way to begin a friendship with them. Perhaps you want to find a way to get to know them outside of having a professional relationship. One way to do this is ask to carpool with someone. Also, many companies offer carpool programs. Carpooling is a way to connect with people who live near you and save on transportation costs at the same time. If carpooling doesn’t work, you might find a reason to celebrate and invite friends from work to join you at an drug and alcohol free celebration.
Be brave and ask someone out for coffee or tea – We run into people all the time, at the park, in our neighborhood, while shopping at the grocery store. Perhaps you’ve seen someone again and again, or perhaps you’ve even had one or two conversations with them. Lots of other people feel just as uncomfortable about reaching out and making new friends as you do. If you have the courage you can be the one to break the ice. The worst that person can do is say no and at least you’ve tried. And on the other hand, if he or she says yes, then perhaps you’ve got a new friendship in your life.
If you’re looking for new friends, perhaps the above suggestions will be helpful. If you’re in recovery, having a new community of people to connect with about things other than drugs and alcohol can make a significant contribution to your well-being.
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