Free Rehab Workbook (Guidance for Going it Alone)
by Hope Rehab Team
Hope Guide for Going it Alone
This home rehab guide has been created as a resource those who do not have sufficient funds to pay for addiction treatment right now or who are unable to enter rehab for other reasons.
The Hope Rehab Website has many useful resources that can be used as part of a self-treatment process. It needs to be stressed that going it alone is likely to be far more challenging than dealing with addiction in rehab, but if you have no other choice, the information we provide here may be of value.
Introductory Self Rehab Resources
Our Ready for Chang pdf manual is designed for people who are getting ready to come to Hope Rehab, but it also contains useful information to help you get started on your self-treatment journey. You can use the questionnaires to assess your current situation and get tips on building and maintain your motivation.
On our How to stop Drinking page you will find hints and tips that could be useful, and remember get help as it can be dangerous to stop suddenly or without someone to support you.
The Importance of Hope and Support for Your Journey
Overcoming an addiction to drugs or alcohol is not easy but no matter how powerless you feel it is possible…with HELP. You don’t have to wait until you hit rock bottom to ask for help. Even if you are not able to come to rehab, it is strongly recommended that you seek out appropriate support (e.g. speak to your doctor and join a 12-step group)
Hope is also essential if you want to begin your journey of recovery – it is what keeps you going. We say “Hope Changes Everything” and “Everyone Can Change” HOPE is the seed of a positive belief system that will start to grow. Psychologists put a great emphasis on developing a positive belief system in order to make changes in one’s life.
First Major Hurdle – How to Deal with Addiction Denial
Denial is a common mental defense mechanism that can help to mange crippling pain, anxiety and stress. The disease has corrupted this defense so now protects the addiction not the addict. Please take a look on our Addiction Denial page to see if you can identify you own denial types.
Do you fully understand what addiction is? – Did you know it’s a brain disease!
This question has finally been answered comprehensively by The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM). In 2011, the ASAM released the latest definition of addiction after a 4-year research study. Read our page outlining some simple concepts that may explain a few mysteries.
The first step toward reclaiming your life is coming to terms with the addiction, i.e. accepting that you have an addiction and accepting that you are an addict. This is important in that understanding the situation correctly helps you get the correct solution in place.
Hope’s program is described in detail in this document. You may find it useful to sit quietly and read. It will give you an idea of what is required to achieve recovery. However, do not be put off trying at home as you can simulate much of what we do just in a simpler fashion.
The Decision: Making the decision is a fundamental part of the change process, whether due to physical health, loss of people or job, money or life style. It maybe because you simply cannot function anymore. Whatever the reason being committing to quitting is all important. I suggest writing down a short list of reasons you have decided to STOP.
Just saying no, like the 1980 slogan states does not work for long – the way to succeed is by saying YES to the ideas on this page that will help.
Possible Withdrawal Symptoms
Elevated heart rate
High blood pressure
Confusion and Disorientation
Safe Home Detox Checklist
Home Detox – prepare your environment.
Doctor – make an appointment and get their support. Make sure you tell them what you are planning.
Drug and alcohol agency can assist with counselling.
Learn about the drug/alcohol and how it affects you, and the risks associated with usage. Make sure you are research withdrawal symptoms.
Get support from helpful family and friends.
Unfortunately, the psychological addict to any substance and behavior is far more entrenched than the physical dependency. People often get through terrible detox’s at home and then when the nightmare is all over they simple go and pick up a drink or a drug all over again – why? The overriding reason is the BRAIN. Addiction is a Brain disorder and remain long after the substance is gone.
Assignment one is to record and reinforce what your addiction has done to your life. It is all about the lengths you go to feed your addiction and the consequences it has on you and your life.
Addiction is not due to weakness or willpower: it is now recognized as a disease that affects brain function, making it difficult to stop. Addiction causes cognitive, emotional and behavioral changes resulting in addicts using despite the obvious harm it is doing.
So as you will probably know by now, stopping or giving up an addiction is not easy. Even addressing what we consider bad habits is hard work. In fact, even trying to start new healthy habits is easier said than done.
A positive attitude will be essential, believing you can stop will help you through the uncomfortable stage. Use positive affirmations to encourage yourself – other things to keep in mind would include:
Goal setting – both short term and long term goals.
Sober Home and clean home.
Social networking new peer group.
Daily rituals – gratitude list, wish lists, acceptance lists.
Remind yourself why you want to stop.
Keep a journal.
Prepare for change.
Choose who you see.
Plan what you will do.
Treat Your Self kindly.
Have Support -someone to talk to.
Learn to urge surf, so you can beat cravings.
Challenge your own denial.
Develop alternative coping skills.
Make lifestyle changes.
Eat 3 meals a day.
Emotional states such as anger, fear or stress.
Physical discomfort like the withdrawal symptoms or physical pain.
Emotional excitement and wanting to enhances it.
Testing yourself – e.g. can I control my drinking?
Temptations, urges, and cravings.
Anger and conflict with others.
Peer pressures at parties.
Acknowledge the purpose of the addiction – What are you self medicating?
Set new rules and boundaries with yourself and others
A recovery map will help you get a clear view of your new life in recovery – e.g. what you are going to do, plans and commitments etc. You will also need to think about personal triggers and slippery behaviour, that could lead back to active addiction.
Reward your progress.
Keep busy Distractions.
Exercise releases endorphins.
Walking for 10 mins.
Sunshine and fresh air.
Enjoy a beautiful view or landscape.
Yoga, Tai Chi, Pilates.
Mindfulness and meditation.
Pets and animals are therapeutic.
Listen to Music.
Light a candle.
Look at photos of people you love.
Take a bubble bath or shower.
Rearrange the furniture.
Giving up alcohol or drugs puts you on the road to a better future, but you have to keep on taking positive action in order to progress. Here are a 100 more tips to help you build a strong sobriety following addiction
A Vision for You
Try the Miracle Question for addicts Test to visualise how the future could be if your problems are no longer present and you can also use this exercise to establish your goals. Take a leap of faith and focus on what you want to become and how you will get there. This exercise helps you to stop thinking about past difficulties and focus only on what you want to be – it takes you out of the problem and into the solution.
Guided meditations and visualizations can be useful to open up your mind and explore a trouble free future. This exercise will give you an opportunity to experience what it feels like to be clean and in recovery enjoying life. Try reading this one out load and then take yourself through it again in your minds eye.
I once heard someone say addicts are “egomaniacs with an inferiority complex” this struck a cord with me. In my head I can still have negative thinking patterns, a dialog that includes unhelpful self-talk springing from irrational core beliefs.
CBT – Cognitive behavioral therapy is now the most popular and widely used form of therapy in the world, used for every type of problem. It is a tool for change that focuses on thinking and thought processes. The good news is we teach clients to self-counsel using a specific CBT exercise known as the ABC’s of CBT. Maybe you could teach yourself some CBT by reading the page explaining.
This is a very useful therapeutic tool to be used after you have achieved sobriety. It helps you identify the character traits and personality flaws that all addicts and alcoholics have – these can could be triggers for relapse so its wise to develop a level of self awareness to combat and compensate in healthy ways.
Develop a sense or purpose to your life, finding meaning in why you have been an addict will help you feel positive about life. An identity shifted is often necessary to sustain and maintain recovery. Find a new healthy purpose. For most recovering addicts it actually gives pleasure to help other suffering addicts.
The current popularity of mindfulness training means many rehabs around the world are now incorporating this approach into their program. In most cases, this will only involve the most basic introduction to mindfulness and perhaps some simple meditation techniques. Here at Hope Rehab, we provide a comprehensive mindfulness program that you will not find anywhere else. It includes
Some useful posts about mindfulness on our website include:
Make sure to also check out the Hope Library for many useful eBooks that you can download for free.