Los Angeles: a neighborhood name might bring to mind celebrities and parties where drugs and alcohol flow freely. While this might be the mental image you get, if you live in Los Angeles, there’s plenty you can do stay sober. When you are surrounded by people and places that make alcohol or drugs very easy to get, it can be difficult to stay on the straight and narrow path you chose when you made the decision to get clean and sober in rehab. That doesn’t mean you’re destined to fail, however! Read on for some great tips on living sober in Los Angeles.
Focus on Healthful Eating
If you’re a foodie, the Los Angeles area is probably one of the best places you can live! There are eateries that appeal to every taste. Whether you’re vegan, a total carnivore, or somewhere in between, there are plenty of healthful restaurants where you can try out nutrient-dense fare. You could pick this up as a new hobby; find similarly health-minded pals to hang out with, and you can vow to visit a new healthy lunch place every weekend.
In addition to being fun, choosing to eat healthy will help you as you recover from your substance addiction. When nutrition is low, willpower can be equally low; focusing on fresh fruits and veggies, lean sources of protein, and whole grains can help keep you in the positive frame of mind necessary so you can resist temptation and keep your eyes on what lies ahead after you are out of the intensive recovery phase.
Keep Yourself Moving
If there’s one thing that can be said about most Los Angeles A-listers, it’s that they do not let themselves go. While you might not have the time or money to spend hours with a personal trainer each day, you can still benefit from the healthy, fit lifestyle that seems to be quite prevalent throughout Los Angeles in general. There are gyms everywhere, and the weather is nice enough to make it feasible to simply go for a jog any day of the year. If jogging or using the stair-stepper at the local gym isn’t your thing, there are also lots of unique workouts available in the area – go sweat to the oldies with Richard Simmons or learn how to be a circus performer and get shape while you do it!
Exercise is an integral part of your recovery process, too, so in addition to keeping you physically healthy and occupying part of your day, staying active can help you stay sober. Exercising can regulate your circadian rhythm, which, in turn, can make it easier for you to just say no when offered a drink. Anything that makes abstaining easier is an excellent activity to pursue, particularly when it’s still a struggle to stay sober.
Make Friends without Partying
If you are recently back from rehab, you know how hard it is to make new friends while leaving old habits behind. You should also know that it’s vital that you do this. Creating a support system will help you stay sober and avoid a relapse. While your 12-Step program and your group therapy are going to help you, it’s good to also have friends that are separate from those also going through the recovery process. Meeting new friends as an adult can be hard in general, and it can be more difficult when it seems like many people around you are using alcohol and drugs to relax and socialize.
The good news is that there are plenty of healthful ways and opportunities to socialize in Los Angeles. You can take an acting class, learn how to dance, join a country club, take part in a sports league, or just meet people at the local park. If you have a dog, bring him along; you can frequent the dog parks to meet other dog-lovers, and your dog can boost your self-esteem so you’re more likely to be open to talking to others.
You might have heard that having a positive mindset can help you through your recovery and beyond. Remember that nobody can change the past; the only thing you can focus on right now is what’s happening right now. If you can manage to keep yourself smiling and looking for the good things in life, you might find it easier to stay sober and stick to your recovery plan.
If you live in or near Los Angeles, there’s plenty to be positive about! You live in one of the most diverse and interesting places in the United States. The neighborhoods are all very diverse, so if you get sick of your neighborhood and lifestyle, you can be elsewhere in another Los Angeles area pretty quickly (well, depending on the 405 Freeway traffic). You’re close to Las Vegas, Disneyland, and the gorgeous Pacific beaches. And the weather is amazing pretty much all the time. You can catch a glimpse of celebrities on the regular while you do normal things like grocery shopping, getting your hair cut, or eating lunch. When you want to get away from it all, there’s an international airport a hop, skip and a jump away. Life in Los Angeles is great, so try to look for something to be thankful for every day.
No matter where you live, recovery from drug or alcohol addiction is not going to be easy. While you might think that you have it harder because you live in Los Angeles, the truth is, there are challenges everywhere. One great thing about living in Los Angeles is that you are surrounded by diversity, beauty, and so much to do that does not include drugs or alcohol. Make a list of all of the wonderful, healthy things you can do in the area, and don’t hesitate to take it out to refer to when you are feeling low. Also, make sure that you have a good therapist in Los Angeles. who you can turn to when you need extra counseling and help. You’ve made it through rehab, so you’re ahead of where you once were. You just need to find your place in Los Angeles now that you are sober.