Written by Valiant Living Recovery on Wednesday, September 18th, 2019
People who use drugs and alcohol may consume them with the intention to help their productivity soar. Alcohol, methamphetamines, and stimulants, like Ritalin and Adderall, often give the impression that they will make you more productive, which they could, if you do not become addicted to them first. Any legal, prescription, recreational, or illicit drugs all have the same commonality – they make you believe they can help your productivity until they can’t any longer because you will crave the substances more than you want to be productive.
Drug and alcohol addiction can take anyone down at any unsuspecting time even if you can buy them legally, or if prescribed by a doctor. What these mind-altering substances were initially meant for, such as taking the edge off, reducing anxiety, or increasing productivity, can take a turn for the worse when addiction ensues which actually exacerbates the symptoms in the opposite manner. Using drugs and alcohol in any capacity is like playing with fire. You can very easily get burned, or burnt out, with a substance use disorder which makes someone not productive at all.
Once you get sober, you may have an even harder time getting back into the swing of doing the things that you once were able to accomplish. Cessation of drugs and alcohol can cause more anxiety and depression from withdrawal or grieving the loss of the addiction which turns out, was the only consistent activity that once kept up with. Finding the motivation to be productive again can be difficult in early sobriety or when you must deal with life on life’s terms during your recovery. Here are just a few tips to help you get into action.
Setting goals and being task-oriented is important when trying to be productive, but you can very easily overwhelm yourself without meaning to. Once the mental fog is lifted and the physical withdrawal wears off, you will no doubt feel better overall misleading you to believe you can do it all. What really happens is you put yourself in a position to do too much which will make you not want to do anything at all. Start small with what you are trying to accomplish and continue to add activities only when you are certain you can manage more. Setting yourself up for failure with productivity really translates to setting yourself up for failure in your sobriety. Eventually when you may conclude that if you cannot do it all, you should give up and do nothing at all. Your program is meant to be one day at a time and in that same regard, take one task at a time.
One of the major components of being stuck in the same spot of ineffectuality is disorganization in the mind and the environment around you. Take time to organize your appointments and meetings on a calendar so you know what is coming up next without guessing. Tidy up your room, your desk, or your car. Open your mail or shred any unnecessary paperwork laying around. The more disorder you keep the less joy you will be able to feel. Declutter as much as you can to give you more space to think instead of letting the surrounding chaos keep you in disarray. Productivity starts with having a mentality of less is more.
The most productive time for most people can be found in the early morning. Use your a.m. hours wisely and do your top priority activities in the morning when you can get the most out of your day. Studies show that generally, people are at their peak performance in the morning because they are more rested after a night’s sleep which positively affects their cognitive functioning, reaction time, mood, and short-term memory. Ultimately, taking advantage of your fresh perspective in the early hours of the day should result in your increased productivity.
One of the most difficult aspects of going from intoxicated to productive in sobriety is the willingness to do something other than what you were doing. For these changes to take place, you must have the courage to change. The serenity prayer touches on this very thing, and you probably say the phrase “courage to change” just about every time you end a recovery meeting. Put that prayer into action because the recovery suggestion of “the only thing you have to change is everything” also applies to how you are conducting your productivity. What once worked for you, may not work for you now because your cognitive and physiological functioning will continue to change over time, especially if you have abused copious amounts of drugs and alcohol. Go with the flow instead of fighting for what you once knew. Your courage to change can make everything in your life exactly the way it is supposed to be.
Productivity in your recovery is a great thing. Not only will you be able to get things done more efficiently and effectively, but you feel great about increasing your productivity in hopes of long-term sobriety.
Offering a full range of recovery and mental health services, Valiant Living offers “Expanded Recovery” to enrich our clients’ lives in mind, body, and spirit. Through evidence-based therapy options and the endless adventure of Colorado, Valiant fosters connection, encouraging clients to get connected to themselves, their peers, their families, and their higher power. With the power of recovery, clients are restored to full health and experience life-changing healing. Call us today for more information: 303-536-5463