How to Get The Most Out of Addiction Rehab

Happy woman is sitting at the bay after rehab.

No one envisions going to rehab as one of their life goals. It is something that happens when a person is going through something particularly difficult. In order to get the most out of the time that is spent on treatment, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Focus on yourself.

This is a time that is meant to be used to focus completely on yourself. You will reach a point in your treatment where you will need to address how your addiction has impacted the people and the world around you but for now, focus on you. Because it is so important to focus on yourself during treatment it is never a good idea to start a new relationship while you are at rehab. You will have the rest of your life to begin a new relationship once you have finished treatment but you will only have a limited amount of time to really work on yourself.

Be honest with yourself.

In order to get the most out of time spent in rehab, it is absolutely essential that you are honest with yourself. If may be difficult to dig through all of the issues you have been avoiding but that is the only way you will be able to work on them and move forward with your life. If you are not truthful with yourself and with others then you will not receive very many benefits from your time in treatment.

Be open with the treatment staff.

It can be hard to open up to people who you do not know very well but please remember that the staff members who are working at an addiction treatment center are dedicating their lives to helping people. Their whole purpose of being at the facility is to help you and to help others work through their problems and regain control of their lives. The only way that they will be able to help you to the best of their ability is if you are open and honest with them.

Be willing to follow the program.

There is a reason behind the way a treatment program is set up and everything will have a purpose. Although it might not all make sense, in the beginning, it is important to follow through with each step. Oftentimes each portion of a program will build on the previous step so it is also important to do things in the correct order.

Don’t try to rush through the process.

Sometimes people will be so eager to get back home, they will want to rush through each step of their program. When this is done the full benefit will not be received. You are already investing a lot of time in your recovery by being in treatment in the first place so you might as well do your best to get the most out of it. You will never be able to get that time in your life back again so don’t waste it. It is better to do one program once for a longer amount of time than to keep doing several short programs because you rushed through the process.

Reach out for help when you are having a hard time.

Sometimes people have a hard time asking for help when they are going through something difficult. It is to be expected that you will have challenging days during your time spent at rehab. This is why it is important to reach out for help from the staff as well as your peers. Holding it all inside will do nothing to help you feel better and will only make things worse.

View treatment as an opportunity, not a “punishment.”

This one shift in perspective can change a person’s entire experience of rehab. When thinking of going to treatment as a punishment you will end up feeling resentful and not very inclined to participate. When thinking of treatment as an opportunity to create a better life for yourself you will be much more motivated to put in the work that is needed to get the most out of your program.

Do your best to focus on the positive.

It can be all too easy to fall into the trap of negative thinking and focusing on all of the things you might be missing out on by being in rehab. While it is normal to have thoughts like these, it is important not to dwell on them and to do your best to focus on the positive aspects of your time in treatment. This will help you to have a much more enjoyable experience.

Guys are talking.

Do not constantly talk about drugs and alcohol.

This is understandably a topic that will come up during your time in treatment and there will be times that you need to focus on your past substance abuse. However, it is wise not to consistently talk about drugs and alcohol. There are many reasons for this—one of the biggest being that it will trigger cravings. It is also important to learn new thinking patterns and new coping mechanisms. Continually talking about drugs will make it all the more difficult to move on from your addiction.

Work on repairing trust before you leave.

Rebuilding all of the trust that was broken because of an addiction will take a lot of time and effort. This is something that is not going to be completely fixed before you leave, but it is helpful to start working on the process while you are still in treatment.

Understand that treatment is only the beginning.

Residential addiction treatment can lay the foundation for a life of recovery and give you the tools to stay sober. Much of the real work will begin once you get home and it will be up to you to apply all that you have learned as you start your new life.



After overcoming her own addiction in 2012 Julie went on to become certified as an addiction counselor in order to help others achieve a life of recovery. She worked in the addiction field for 8 years and now uses both her personal and professional experiences with addiction as an influence for her writing.