Recovery is about much more than overcoming substance use disorder or disordered eating, it’s about changing your lifestyle and shifting your focus to healthier things. It’s about learning to live a different way. Support in recovery is important, but self-care is also essential to long-term success in your recovery path/program.
The Importance of Self-Care
Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately to take care of our physical, spiritual, mental and emotional health. Although it’s a simple concept in theory, it’s something that very often gets overlooked. Self-care is key to improved mood and reduced anxiety and also key to a good relationship with oneself and others.
Self-care is not a selfish act. It is not only about considering our own needs, but about knowing what you need to do in order to take care of yourself and be successful in recovery. It’s not something that you should force yourself to do or something you don’t enjoy doing. It should be something that fills you up, rather than depleting you.
No two people are alike and it’s important to create a self-care plan that works for you; however, there are aspects of self-care that are applicable to most everyone. With an app like CaredFor, treatment programs can provide self-care tips and routines to enhance the patient or alumni experience, that touch on every aspect of self-care. Through the month of October CaredFor is helping to curate content for app users centered around self-care tips.
Over the next couple of months we will be sharing tips on different aspects of self-care. The holiday season can be a stressful or trying time for many individuals in recovery so we hope these self-care plans and ideas will be helpful during the upcoming season.
Physical - Care for Your Body
Physical health is vital to the recovery process. We must take care of our bodies if we want to enjoy life and feel good. There are several ways to do this - exercise, eat a healthy and balanced diet, get enough sleep and practice good personal hygiene.
With the CaredFor patient engagement app, admins can share articles related to the connection of physical and mental health, books and other resources to help motivate and educate a user on ways to implement physical self-care techniques in early recovery. The recovery and healing trackers are another way to motivate and hold patients/alumni accountable for their recovery process.
Spiritual - Care for Your Spirit
Even if you don’t consider yourself a spiritual person or don’t have a belief in a Higher Power you can still reap the many rewards that come with spiritual self-care. Yoga and meditation can be implemented to nurture one’s spiritual care. Get outside and into nature, volunteer or find other ways to feed your soul.
Admins on the CaredFor app often share book recommendations along with inspirational and motivational videos and podcasts. Self-guided meditations and inspirational quotes or lists are another way admins help to inspire users to practice spiritual self-care.
Mental - Care for Your Mind
Many people in recovery have a dual diagnosis (substance use plus mental health diagnosis). In these cases, it is especially important to address any underlying mental health issues that could affect the recovery process. Getting psychological or psychiatric care may greatly benefit you even if you do not have a diagnosed mental disorder. Talking with a therapist can boost mental health.
With the new Telehealth component of the CaredFor app, patients and alumni can schedule talk therapy sessions and meet through the app. Appointments and reminders can be scheduled through the app as well.
Emotional - Care for Your Feelings
Confronting and coping with your emotions in a healthy way is important in someone’s recovery and ongoing self-care. Emotional self-care means that you honor your feelings. You feel them and process through them, rather than push them aside and ignore them. You talk about them with people you trust and develop healthy coping skills to manage your emotions effectively.
The CaredFor app is a safe and supportive space for users to voice their feelings and gain support and guidance from other users. Daily affirmations, inspirational quotes, community challenges to promote better well-being (meditation, go for a hike) and the gratitude journal are all the features of the CareFor app used to promote emotional self-care.
Social - Care for Our Relationships
Whether it’s a peer support group, recovery fellowship, friends in recovery or supportive family members, social interactions are essential to our lives, especially in recovery. To practice true self-care, we must allow others into our lives and healthy boundaries are essential to self-care when it comes to relationships.
The CaredFor app provides community of alumni, patients or families where users can connect with others going through similar challenges or situations. It provides a safe space for them to connect and form relationships within the app.