A Recovery Morning Routine Sets The Pace
I have been extremely resistant to any type of routine or schedule for most of my life. I remember seeing my aunt as a young child, she carried this planner around with her everywhere and used it for pretty much everything you can imagine. It seemed to rule her life. Then began my objection to any type of planning. No way in hell a planner is going to instruct me where to go or what to do next. I am the ultimate authority of my own life. Where is the fun in planning things anyway? Since those many years of disorganized thoughts, spontaneous events, unthoughtful actions, and doing everything on a whim I have come to see great value in structure. In particular, I have found comfort and ease in my morning routine which consists of; waking up, coffee, making my bed, meditation, spiritual reading, prayer, and gratitude.
The first three actions of waking up, drinking coffee, and making my bed speak for themselves. Don’t know what it is about making my bed but when I start my day with making my bed it sets the tone for everything else. What happens when I don’t make my bed? Well, things seem to be disorganized. What I would like to focus on here though is meditation, prayer, and gratitude. For some reason when I do these things and make a conscious decision to think of some things I am grateful for, my attitude throughout the day benefits greatly.
I meditate for 10 -15 minutes using guided meditation supplied by an app I subscribed to called Headspace. Headspace is amazing. It consists of meditations focusing on different areas such as relationships, focus, appreciation, starter courses, advanced courses, happiness, grieving, dealing with anxiety, pregnancy, pain management, self-esteem, sleep, yea you get the picture. They have a meditation course for pretty much everything imaginable. What is the benefit? I become more in touch with myself, the world around me, those I love, and the beauty of life, something of great importance to any addict or alcoholic.
Prayer and Devotional for Addiction
Next, I like to read some type of daily devotional. Some options that I have personally used are; Twenty-Four Hours a Day, Daily Reflections, The Language of Letting Go: Daily Meditations for Codependents, and Mirror of Intimacy. Twenty-Four Hours a Day includes a daily thought for the day, meditation for the day, and prayer for the day. Everything in this book is based on alcoholism and addiction. Daily Reflections includes an excerpt from the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous or Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, along with some thoughts on that excerpt. This is seen as AA-approved literature. The Language of Letting Go is a great one for those struggling with codependency and since alcoholism and drug addiction is a form of codependency it is very fitting for us, not to mention we all tend to have relational issues. Mirror of Intimacy: Daily Reflections on Emotional and Erotic Intelligence is great for those struggling with relational and sex issues. Once again, something we addicts and alcoholics tends to struggle with.
After my devotional, I like to spend some time giving things to my higher power. One of the main issues we alcoholics and addicts have is fear. My higher power helps me relinquish control of the external things I have no control over, gain some acceptance, and overcome the fear that sometimes rules my decisions. Prayer may be controversial to some but this is one of the pieces that create the foundation in any 12 step program. As a recovery coach, I do not require any of my clients to choose a 12 step program as there are many different options available but it is the program of action I have chosen and it works for me so I would be lying if I did not reveal that however hard I may try I may be somewhat biased.
Lastly, I write down a couple of things I am grateful for in a small journal. Specifically, I use something called, The Five Minute Journal. It takes less than 5 minutes. In this journal, you list 3 things I am grateful for, 3 things that would make today great, and daily affirmations. All too often we fall into only seeing the problems and hardships life has to offer. A bit of gratefulness goes a long way in changing a poor attitude to a positive attitude. And let’s be quite honest, what is the point of staying sober if we are miserable.
So in conclusion I must admit that I have exchanged my complete lack of disorganization and lack of thoughtfulness into something a bit more organized. It has been my experience that while resistant this type of thing is a must for alcoholics and addicts. I’ve listed the things I do, you don’t have to choose your routine, create your own, pick what you like and leave the rest, research others, make it yours. The benefits are endless so make it a routine.
If you are interested in starting your personal recovery journey and need help developing a plan of action, Thrive can help. Contact us today to learn more about our sober coaching services.