Dealing with Chemical Dependency

Chemical Dependency

Drug addiction has claimed lives – much like many other diseases. Yet unlike many other diseases, we struggle to find a way to contextualize drug addiction in the same way. Instead of tackling it as a societal issue with clear risk factors that can be addressed and mitigated, many continue to endorse or vote for political policies that explicably cause more addiction and suffering, and needlessly harm or end the lives of thousands of Americans because of chemical dependency.

So, to better understand addiction in a way that allows us to tackle it both on an individual basis and as a society, it’s important to re frame what addiction is in a more concrete, biological manner. When a person is physically addicted to a drug, they develop a chemical dependency in their brain. This chemical dependency can be broken, just as it can be built up. Cost-effective treatment exists to help people who struggle with this dependence, and many other disorders related to it.


Addiction and  Chemical Dependency

Addiction, as defined by the American Psychiatric Association, is described as a condition defined by compulsive substance use despite clear harmful and lasting consequences. When a person continues to use a drug even though it is putting them and their lives in jeopardy, they are struggling with an addiction.

Dependence is a bit more specific. Addiction implies dependence, but the two are not necessarily the same thing. It depends, of course, on the context of how the words are used – but where addiction describes the condition of compulsive substance use, dependence describes the enthrallment of the mind to the substance through the brain, specifically through withdrawal symptoms and extremely powerful cravings.

Chemical dependence is when a person’s brain chemistry has altered to be tied to the drug, inducing withdrawal symptoms when a person tries to stop using, or causing them to build an increasing tolerance to a drug, forcing a higher intake over time.

Not all cases of addiction need to be cases of chemical dependence. While addiction always implies that changes have been made to the brain due to consistent drug use, sometimes, it’s the emotional dependence that is the primary drive behind the addiction rather than the physical dependence.


Chemical vs. Emotional Dependency

A person who is struggling mostly with a chemical dependency may fully realize their addiction and may not even use drugs to cope with emotional issues – instead, they take drugs to keep the pain away, and because they cannot resist the craving. For others, addiction is a way to numb pain, forget memories, and distract the mind from deeper struggles. And for most, their case is somewhere in the middle, between both.

Addiction treatment is a highly individual thing but knowing how a person perceives their addiction and knowing why exactly they’re struggling to stay clean and get sober in the first place can shed a lot of light on how to best help them in the long-term. For someone with a chemical dependence, the goal is to break the conditioning placed on the brain by weeks, months, and years of drug use. This can take time, but it is possible to largely reverse the damage done to the brain by drug use, to the point where cravings begin to fade, and life can be lived normally.


Safely Overcoming Withdrawal

The first step to breaking chemical dependency is seeking professional help. Withdrawal symptoms are a mainstay for someone who is chemically/physically dependent, and these symptoms can range from extremely unpleasant to fatal, depending on the drug and the severity of the addiction. Alcohol withdrawal and benzodiazepine withdrawal is very dangerous.

Seek out a safe, reputable clinic or sober living home, and get sober under medical supervision. If anything goes wrong, having professionals there to help you get through the first few hours and observe you over the next few days to come can make withdrawal much safer.

From there, the hard part is staying clean. A sober living community can help you take your mind off the cravings, by incorporating you into a living breathing community, with chores, group activities, and more.


Building Towards Long-Term Recovery

Many people struggle with the long-term part of getting sober. Sobriety itself just means not being high or drunk – and while for many that is an achievement in and of itself, it’s still one of the earliest obstacles. Right after comes the struggle to stay clean. And for the first few weeks, this can be excruciatingly difficult.

Rehab centers and sober living environments make this much easier. A good sober living facility can help you focus on building the emotional toolset you need to stay sober even in the face of stress and responsibility. But you’re not going to do it alone.

Arguably the biggest key to long-term recovery is surrounding yourself with friends and family, who can support you and help you stay sober even when times get tough.

It is undeniable that choice plays a role in the matter. But there is a reason addiction is much more common among young people and people with mental health disorders. Addiction is more likely to develop in people without stable lives and stable minds, in positions where they are most vulnerable and open to suggestion. Teens, by virtue of their youth, make mistakes and have problems. People who struggle with their self-esteem, social status or income are more likely to turn to drugs to cope than others.

But addiction is not wholly discriminatory, either. There are biological factors at play, genetics, and family history, and even the affluent and privileged can feel society’s pressures and find addiction as a form of coping.

Pushing blame, shame and the harsh “rule of law” onto people who struggle with addiction does not solve the issue, but turns addicts into an easy target for frustration, discrimination, and ostracizing. It considerably lowers the chance of people going out of their way to seek treatment, because revealing that you may have a substance problem lowers your value as a person in other people’s eyes.

Treatment is the individual’s way forward. By recognizing that addiction is not a terrible crime, but a health condition to be overcome and treated, and by surrounding yourself with understanding friends and family members who realize this, you can take your steps towards sobriety and commit yourself to recovery, no matter how long the road might be.

But to make treatment a viable option for all, we have to convince more than just a handful of families that addiction is not what it seems, and that being addicted is something deserving of a little sympathy, rather than fear or blame.


The Advantages of Living a Sober Life

Sober Life

To anyone with a long history with addiction, the first and most obvious advantage of a sober lifestyle is the fact that sobriety is your norm – and you don’t have to worry about the addiction coming back to haul you through a series of miserable events and regrets. But getting addicted and then committing to sobriety and abstinence from drugs does not mean you’re surrendering your life to a lack of fun for the sake of sanity. Living a sober life means enjoying it and still living a full life.

Instead, sober life can be much more enjoyable and far more exciting than any drug on the planet. One thing it most certainly is, is fulfilling. A good life spent sober is better than any high on the planet, and here are just a few of the things you’re going to love about being sober and embracing your new sober life.

More Time

The first few things you’ll notice when sober is that the day has 24 hours, and you’ll often be surprised by just how much a person can get done in that time frame. With adequate rest and some time devoted to chores and eating, there’s a solid 10-12 hours to spend on work, passions, and yourself. The time you might have previously spent on your addiction can now be turned into time for you to find a way to sustain yourself and your family, as well as put some time towards keeping your body and mind healthy and keeping the house clean.

Sleep can be a major change in a person’s mental health right after weeks, months or years of addiction. It’s not easy to get enough sleep or maintain a healthy sleeping cycle while struggling with drugs. But once you get your sleep in order, your health and concentration will drastically improve – and you’ll find that there’s a lot of time to get things done.

More Friends

One of the bigger changes is the ability to build new relationships, and salvage old ones. Addiction robs you of a lot of self-determination, time, money, and worst of all, it robs you of other people’s trust. Often, an addiction will cost someone not only years off their life, but it can break relationships, even with the people we are closest with. It’s difficult to be accountable and stay true to your word when you’re in the middle of struggling with an addiction – but going sober gives you the chance to regain that trust.

Friendships, family, intimate relationships and romantic interests – if you want to share in the fun of living with others, then you have to trust them, and they have to trust you – and most importantly, you have to trust yourself. Sobriety won’t automatically make you a paragon of integrity, but it’s a prerequisite if you want to start living an honest and fulfilling life.

Better Health

Drug use will take a toll on your body. A few hits won’t do much – but months and years of accumulated use produces signs of wear on the human form. Alcohol easily adds pounds to your frame, putting stress on your heart and liver. Stimulants like cocaine and meth can strain your cardiac muscle, deaden your appetite, and even lead to skin sores and rotting teeth. Nicotine’s primary delivery mechanism, tobacco, is carcinogenic.

Regardless of what your poison is, all drugs contribute to serious brain damage, diminishing your cognitive ability, leading to memory problems, difficulty with problem solving, increased risk-taking, and reckless self-destructive behavior.

It can take up to a few years of healthy eating and sobriety to help your body recover from addiction, but it’s possible – and necessary, if you want a good quality of life.

One reason addiction is difficult to overcome is because prolonged drug use can make it hard for your mind to listen to a voice of reason. And, all this can aggravate other mental health issues.

Sober Life: State of Mind

We’ve mentioned the copious social and physical benefits of staying sober. We’ve mentioned how it will help you maintain a memory, keep your brain and organs healthy, stave off a risk of cancer and heart disease, and even help you improve your physical appearance and physical performance. But perhaps the biggest part of getting sober is the mental battle you have to endure – and the benefits you reap from surviving it.

Regardless of why a person gets addicted to begin with, over the course of an addiction we are bound to experience feelings of guilt, shame, and negativity. Some people develop a serious depression, something they struggle with for years after. Others develop fears and anxieties, insecurities, and emotional pain.

When these feelings start to grow, the urge to drink or use grows stronger. Even if people didn’t start out using their addiction as a way to cope with themselves, most start seeing it as a way to hold off the growing pain and problems.

Once you finally take the first few bold steps towards sobriety and recovery, all those emotions can hit you like a freight train. They tend to accumulate, making this period incredibly difficult and mentally strenuous.

For a time, you’ll feel split moods, remembering your sorrows and celebrating your newfound sobriety. This can be a dangerous and strange time in your life – but with support, proper treatment, and a good guide, you can overcome the frustration and the shame, find a way to forgive yourself, take action however you can to make things right, and eventually come to terms with the old you and the new you, and see a clear path ahead for yourself.

Addiction, in a way, is temporary happiness. Our vices all represent ways to seek a reprieve from greater problems and bigger issues. But by staying sober, you gain the clarity of mind you need to address these problems in your life and find real happiness.

It won’t happen overnight or even over a week – but getting sober and staying on the sober life is the first key step to overcoming every terrible feeling you’ve ever had and clearing your conscience – not for some spiritual or religious purpose, but simply to create a new life for yourself in which you can be truly happy and content without being self-destructive.


What Makes Synthetic Drugs So Dangerous?

Synthetic Drugs are dangerous

The term “synthetic drug” has become more popular over the past few years, with growing awareness of the fact that new drugs are being developed in labs around the world, sometimes for illegal profit, and at other times for benign research, misused and sold on the black market. Synthetic drugs differ from the more common illicit substances that the public is commonly aware of, like marijuana, cocaine, and heroin. However, the distinction is neither immediately apparent, nor is it emphasized enough.

Understanding the dangers of synthetic drugs – and what they are – can help you identify them, report them, and warn your friends and family to stay away from them. While all drugs are dangerous in their own way, there are certain factors that specifically make synthetic drugs much more potent.

What is a Synthetic Drug?

Synthetic drugs, as opposed to other psychoactive and addictive drugs, are specifically designed to function like other drugs while evading the law. These so-called designer drugs are built in laboratories from an assortment of entirely legal and mundane chemicals available globally as research material. Because of their synthetic nature, they are often far more potent than their “natural” or original counterparts and come with a bevy of extremely dangerous side effects.

The biggest danger in synthetic drugs is the fact that they are often complete unknowns. These are drugs built to be chemically like popular illicit drugs whose side effects are known, sold under the guise of being a legal alternative. Legal, because due to the speed at which these drugs are developed and sold, it is difficult to catch up and regulate each iteration.

Instead, awareness is needed. Not only are these drugs dangerous in general, but their nature as knockoffs makes them dangerous to addicts with preexisting drug use, and an intimate knowledge of their own limits and tolerance. Because these drugs are often more potent than their counterparts, synthetic drugs have caused countless ER visits and several tragic overdose deaths – a figure that is unfortunately rising, in no small part due to these drugs.

Synthetic drugs have existed for decades, termed after the fact that they are completely synthesized in a laboratory without the use of “natural” ingredients. To process cocaine, you need to harvest the coca plant. To make heroin, you need poppy. To sell cannabis, you need a cannabis plant. Alcohol is made from fields of hops, barley, grapes and more. But drugs like fentanyl, LSD, MDMA, and synthetic cannabinoids can be made anywhere with the right equipment and the right chemical compounds, cutting out the logistics of growing and transporting plant matter for drug production – a fact that allows synthetic drugs to grow unhinged across the world, aided by faster delivery systems and online black markets.  

Commonly Known Synthetic Drugs and Their Effects

Synthetic drugs come in many forms, but the most popular have been around for years. These include:

Methamphetamine: Known also as meth or crystal meth, this drug mimics the euphoric and empowering effects of amphetamines, together with numerous side effects including tooth decay, skin irritation, open sores, and rapid cognitive decline.

Synthetic Cannabinoids: While these drugs bind to the same receptors as THC, a drug that is debatably harmful, synthetic cannabinoids are much more powerful than their natural counterparts and can cause severe side effects such as nausea, hallucinations, psychosis, and organ damage.

Synthetic Cathinones: Known also as “bath salts”, these drugs are powerful hallucinogens and highly addictive, mimicking the psychoactive compound present in the Middle Eastern khat plant. An amphetamine-like substance in these drugs gives the same feeling of euphoria as ecstasy and meth, furthering its addictiveness. It acts as a stimulant.

LSD: While not addictive and rarely the cause of an overdose, LSD is potentially dangerous due to its nature as a powerful hallucinogen, and it is a synthetic drug, accidentally conceived by Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann in the 30s. It is illegal due to its nature as a powerful mind-altering substance, rather than severe side-effects or addictive properties.

Krokodil: A notorious albeit rare drug used in Eastern Europe and more recently in the US, Krokodil is a mixture of several substances for the explicit purpose of a very powerful high, at the cost of poisoning, tissue necrosis (tissue death), and death. Known as desomorphine, it is made by mixing codeine with household items including paint thinner and petrol.

MDMA: Also known as Molly or Ecstasy, MDMA is a “euphoric stimulant” much like cathinones, popularized through rave culture and dance festivals for years – and in other circles, more recently. Abundantly available as colorful tabs and tablets, MDMA is a common party drug, known for altering perception, and causing long-term negative side effects such as depression and addiction. Like LSD, the medical and psychological potential for MDMA is under research, but recreational use of the drug is very dangerous.

One or two positive experiences with these drugs does not negate their dangers. Side effects are a possibility, rather than a guarantee, but they are often more severe and more common with synthetic drugs due to manufacturing mistakes, bad mixes, and other elements of human error. Synthetic cannabinoids, for example, are mixed and sprayed onto desiccated plant material. Sometimes, this spotty application can result in plant pieces with a much higher – and much more dangerous – concentration of the active drug.

Why Synthetic Drugs are a Growing Issue

Synthetic drugs like meth, LSD and ecstasy have been around for decades, but the recent explosion in their use and popularity has several factors. For one, they’re part of a growing trend among teens. MDMA, and to a lesser degree, synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones, have become popular at parties and gatherings. Furthermore, meth production has increased as the number of meth users continues to grow. It’s a matter of supply and demand.

Beyond that, these drugs are relatively easy to produce from a logistical standpoint and by continuously changing their makeup, labs can keep them dubiously legal, marketing them as harmless household items like jewelry cleaners or potpourri, while catering to a clientele that knows where to find these drugs.

Over the last decade, synthetic drugs have left in their wake countless deaths, long-term injuries, hospitalizations, poisonings and even comas. Staying away from them is an important priority for parents and teens alike.

All Drugs Have Potential for Abuse

There is little doubt about the dangers of synthetic drugs – we’ve gone over their death tolls and injury statistics, the potential side effects and the growing popularity – but it’s important to remember that this does not make other illicit drugs any better, or substantially safer. A “clean” cocaine or heroin addiction is going to land you in the ER and kill you at a statistically slower pace, but regardless of what you’re addicted to, not seeking treatment means accepting the risk of death from every high.

That, and with the flooding of synthetic drugs in the market, many “plant-grown” drugs are being sold laced with synthetic drugs and cut with dangerous and cheap fillers to drive up profitability. Street-level heroin in particular has often been notably laced with fentanyl, a far more potent synthetic opioid. If mixed badly, one hit can cause an overdose.

Stories about new and powerful drugs don’t make the other ones any less dangerous, and it’s important to remember that all addictive drugs can easily lead a person to a life of struggle and possible overdose.

Addiction to Synthetic Drugs Can Be Treated

An addiction to these types of drugs is more dangerous because we don’t really know what it might entail. While unpredictable side effects, violent physical reactions, poisonings and even comas caused by badly mixed drugs are part of a growing list of worries, the long-term effects of many synthetic drugs are virtually unknowable, especially drugs like synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones, because studies were never organized to research just how the body reacts to long-term use. Speculation includes potential heavy metal poisoning due to the heavy metal content in drugs like K2/Spice, among other dangers.

Yet aside from these factors, an addiction to synthetic drugs is similar to an addiction to other illicit substances – which means it can be treated in much the same way. While the risk of death or overdose from a relapse is higher with synthetic drugs, treatment does exist – and an addiction to these new drugs can be overcome. Sober living homes can help individuals completely distance themselves from these substances and take the time they need for their bodies and minds to recover.

Outside of treatment, family involvement and a strong support system  of friends is important to maintain abstinence and stay strong in the face of stress. It may take months or years to cravings to completely subside, but as with other addictions, it does get easier with time and accumulated experience.


Houston Life: All the Things You Forgot About While Addicted

Houston, TX | Transcend Texas

Set near the eastern coast of Texas, Houston is a beautiful city. Home to over 2 million people, Space City is known for its rich cultural heritage, art and museum scene, Tex-Mex cuisine, and the it sports the country’s biggest total acreage of parkland in a populous city, making it not only an urban metropolis, but a town filled with the sounds and sights of nature.

If you made Houston your home, then you have chosen a grand city to live in. There’s much to see, and just as much to do. However, living in a city like this means it can be easily taken for granted. Don’t let the opportunity to take in this city pass you by and take advantage of it – especially for sobriety.

To someone struggling with addiction, very little matters. Life is a battle between highs and lows – until you step out of the cycle and find yourself in a completely different kind of life. A life that gives you the time and the ability to enjoy things the way they are, and not dread every waking moment spent away from your next fix.

Life can be many things – in fact, it can be a little bit of everything. At first, that’s frightening. Abstinence comes with the challenges of abruptly taking responsibility for yourself, finding work, and fitting into society. But it also comes with the ability to enjoy a nice day, play a game, and spend time with the people you love in a city filled with things to do.

If you’re looking for a way to spend your time while living sober in Houston, then have no worries. There’s no shortage of things to check out.


Enriching Your Day In Houston

Let’s take this a step at a time. Houston is a big city, with over 80 neighborhoods, and countless wonderful places to live. Yet when it’s time to explore and see just how you can spend your newfound time outside of work and home, you might come to see that there’s more to this city than meets the eye. We’ll go over a few ways you can meet new people, make friends, gather experiences, and try things out in Houston.


Join A Class

The quickest and best way to spend some time and meet new people is through a learning experience. Classes come in all shapes and sizes, for anything and everything.

From cooking classes to pottery workshops or fitness events, there’s no shortage of new and upcoming classes to help you find your passion, hone existing skills, or just find people to talk to and share interests with.


Try Out New Food

While Houston is undoubtedly famous for its Tex-Mex cuisine, there’s much more this city has to offer – even if you have picky taste buds. The city offers something from every corner of the globe – you don’t have to pay for an expensive travel ticket and plan a whole vacation to get a bite of something completely new and different.


Learn A New Skill

Outside of hobbies or experiences, going to a class or school for a brand new professional skill or to pursue a new vocation can be a great use of your time, and a good way to find more work out of rehab. Honest skilled labor, from welding to electrical repairs and mechanical work, is extremely valuable in a bustling and industrious city like Houston.

It’s not just that learning new things is a productive and potentially fulfilling use of your time. Learning is important for rehabilitation after addiction, as most drug abuse leaves the brain diminished in terms of cognition. Staying sharp can help you regain your full mental faculties.


Experiencing The City Of Houston

Of course, you can take a class in electrical engineering or take a bite of a delicious meal anywhere in the country. So, what makes Houston the great city it is? There’s no one thing to point out – like any city, it has its charms and problems, pros and cons. But there are many unique aspects to Houston, including its affinity to nature and its numerous nearby getaways.


Check Out The Bayou

Stretching over 50 miles into Galveston Bay, the Buffalo Bayou features rich greenery and passes by many of the city’s landmarks, including the Houston Memorial Park. It’s also the historic site of Houston’s founding, and a common outdoor recreation spot.


Visit Houston’s Museums

In Houston, it seems like there’s a museum for everyone. From the Museum of Fine Arts, to the Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Children’s Museum, the Contemporary Arts Museum, the Menil Collection and the famous “Garage Mahal”, Houston is well-versed in preserving its heritage and showing the world its cultural roots. More than just a place for interesting art, Houston’s museum scene offers a little bit of everything – places to have fun, places to learn, places to be inspired, and places to experience. Depending on what you’re in the mood for, there’s bound to be a place for you to go.


Spend A Day At The Zoo

As beautiful as art and culture can be, there’s more to Houston than the human element. Home to sanctuaries, wildlife preserves and national parks, Houston has a considerable animal population, and a world-class zoo.


The Little Things In Life

We’ve covered life-changing experiences and unique city attractions – but sometimes, it’s the little things that we miss the most. When’s the last time you sat down and watched people whilst sipping a hot cup of coffee? Or enjoyed a relatable song, without drugs? Here are a couple suggestions for taking in Houston’s beauty while sober.


Take A Stroll Through Nature

Home to acres upon acres of preserved natural landscapes, Houston is one of the best cities in the country for enjoying relaxing walks through nature. Pick any park, on any sunny day, and just walk for a bit. You don’t need much rhyme or reason. Walking outdoors can help you clear your head, arrange your thoughts, and help you sort things out with yourself.


Go Somewhere You Haven’t Gone Before

It’s a big city, with millions of people, and countless things to do. Instead of going back to old routines or revisiting your usual old hangout spots, make it a point to explore Houston in a way you never have before, and see it from a completely different perspective.

If you’re looking for a good city to get sober, then Houston is an excellent choice. The blend of cultures and the duality between nature and urban life make this a city where you can always see something new.


Sober Fun In Houston

Living Sober In Houston | Transcend Texas

Houston is a big city, with 180 years of history and heritage. As a metropolis, and the largest city in American South, it’s a melting pot of cultures and traditions with over 2 million inhabitants. As far as places to live go, being sober in Houston is great as it’s one of the most interesting cities in the United States, and there’s more to do here than most people would suspect.

Sure, there’s sports bars, a busy nightlife, and a slew of breweries and beer markets. Yet when going through recovery, many recovering addicts share the fear that they won’t know what to do with their free time without the temptations of addiction, especially alcohol. But you don’t need to drink to have a good time in Houston – and you don’t need to be anywhere near a drink to enjoy yourself, even at night, and party well into the next morning.

Learning to have fun while sober is one of the most important lessons during addiction. You can’t stay determined and committed to your sobriety if you don’t know how to enjoy yourself – and in a massive city like Houston, there are plenty of ways to have fun.


Head To The Theater

This can go both ways – you could take in a piece of classical stage play or experience a more modern twist in any one of Houston’s historic theaters. It’s an easy way to kill some time on an uneventful afternoon, and you might be surprised as Houston’s theater scene.

Head downtown to the theater district and take in the glamour and sophistication. Even if you’re not necessarily a patron of the arts, you might find a play you’ll really connect with.


Take In Real History

Houston is a city with a rich history, from Texan traditions to revolutionary milestones in space travel. Yet there’s much more history than that in Houston’s zoos and museums, scattered throughout the museum district. While being sober in Houston there are

If you’re up for a day of learning, wonder, and culture, there’s bound to be something that’ll catch your attention among the 300,000 sq.-ft. of museum space.

You don’t have to be big on trivia or science to enjoy wandering the halls of a museum. Houston’s museums offer an insight into ancient cultures, with textiles, paintings, artifacts and photographs giving you a glimpse into a world that no longer exists today, an enriching escape that will leave you amazed at human ingenuity and the many stories embedded in each installation.


Fill Your Evening With Laughter

They say laughter is the best medicine – and there’s more truth to that than you might think. Comedy can be a great path not only to a happier self and better state of mind, but it can help remind you of a form of joy you might not have had in a while as you pursue sobriety in Houston.

Many comedians have had their fair share of battles with addiction, and sober comedians are especially skilled at turning their own demons into opportunities for laughter, and a light-hearted insight into something deeper, and quite meaningful – a personal perspective on an incredibly painful subject.

Have a go at local comedy clubs, check out comedians on tour, or spend the night at home binge-watching your favorite comics on Netflix. No matter which way you get your laughs, comedy can be a great help in getting a new, positive perspective on your struggles and triumphs while sober in Houston.


Skip The Booze, Get Some Coffee

Coffee is traditionally a drink had during the day, but there’s nothing to stop you from visiting a coffee shop at night and enjoying a smooth cup of decaf to the sounds of mellow music, and the invigorating aroma of roasted beans.

Plenty of coffee shops throughout Houston offer an amazing nighttime ambience, making them the perfect locale for when you just want a place to retreat to, while still out in public, enjoying a book or just people-watching. Shops like Agora and Black Hole Coffee House come to mind, but there are many more. Enjoying time out in cafe’s is a great way to spend time sober in Houston.

No one says you must go out to get a cup of your favorite brew. But you might find that getting out of the house and ordering a cup at a café of your choice is about more than just taking in the coffee and the music. Then there’s the prospect of going to each and every one, just to see which suits your tastes best.


Enjoy The Outdoors While Sober In Houston

While Houston is a city, it also has some of the most beautiful parks of any urban center in America, with several nature centers, sanctuaries, a city arboretum, and countless trails and outdoor activities not far from the city outskirts. If you’re looking for a stroll through nature, you will have a hard time choosing.

Houston Audubon, for example, manages 17 sanctuaries throughout the Gulf Coast region, and concerns itself with the conservation of several local species of birds and other wildlife. If you want to take in the calm and zen of a forest without leaving town, there’s no better place to head to than the arboretum.

Just beyond the city, Houston offers a slew of outdoor activities, parks and trails. These can be good options for hose who are sober in Houston to spend some time appreciating nature and the outdoors.


Indulge Your Inner Foodie

Sobriety is all about not giving in to dangerous and harmful temptations and falling in love with sobriety instead – and one of the key factors to enjoying being sober in Houston is enjoying a good meal.

Houston, being one of the most populous cities in the country, is no stranger to good cooking in a variety of cuisines, and the city is outfitted with countless top-notch restaurants, bistros, bakeries, and chocolatiers. If it’s a good culinary experience you’re after, Houston has its fair share to offer.


Volunteer At An Animal Shelter

Perhaps one of the most fulfilling ways of spending your time in recovery is through helping others – especially those who can’t help themselves. Houston has several shelters that dedicate themselves to rescuing animals off the streets and getting them out of abusive homes, giving them the love and treatment, they deserve so they can get adopted into a caring home.

However, the process from A to B is complicated, and filled with challenges. Volunteers are much appreciated, and any help – from buying food, to sponsoring medical care, to helping with other tasks and reaching out to families for awareness – can go a long way.

Addiction is incredibly expensive, and time-consuming. Individuals can bring themselves to the brink of financial ruin and beyond in search of the next high. And as an addiction worsens, more and more time is spent thinking about or craving the drug. The idea of sobriety being boring couldn’t be further from the truth. Instead, what sobriety brings you is a healthier wallet, a healthier body, and a treasure trove of time better spent doing half a million other things.

Dedicating yourself to sobriety does not just mean you’re staying drug-free. People have this misconception that you’re sacrificing something to stay sober. Instead, being sober gives you the opportunity to truly live. It gives you the opportunity to seek out adventure, have new positive experiences, and make memories that you will actually remember the next day.

This list is just the tip of the iceberg. What awaits you living sober in Houston is not just a list of “sober things” to do in your city. It’s life, the way it’s meant to be lived, free from the chains of addiction and the unhealthy and destructive obsession your old habit forced on you. Embrace this new life, and everything it has to offer.

Things To Do While Sober In Houston

Sober In Houston | Transcend Texas

Houston is a beautiful city, with a rich heritage and grand historic significance for the country. That being said, you shouldn’t just take anyone’s word for it – instead, take the opportunity to judge the city for yourself as someone who has taken a pledge to themselves to go sober in Houston, and stick to it.

Sobriety doesn’t have to be dull, boring or predictable – it can be spontaneous, exciting, and the pathway to many new adventures and countless unforgettable memories while sober in Houston.

When drugs become a factor in someone’s life, they might often struggle to see how things could be more enjoyable while stone-cold sober. But the truth is that when you’re on drugs, life is completely fogged.

While that helps some people escape the more painful and tragic realities of their life, it also forces them to miss out on the truly beautiful and meaningful moments.


What To Do While Sober In Houston

Here are just a couple things you could do while sober in Houston:


Explore Buffalo Bayou

An absolutely beautiful stretch of land, the Buffalo Bayou has undergone redevelopment costing several million dollars in order to preserve and uphold its natural beauty. The Buffalo Bayou Park is an especially tranquil place to spend the day while sober in Houston, with natural landscaping, footpaths and more.


Take a Martial Arts Class

Martial arts are more than just a great way to learn about self-defense – they can help you feel more calm and confident in your everyday life, and provide you with a proactive mindset to tackle life’s challenges without timidity or hesitation. From striking arts like boxing and krav maga, to more visceral grappling arts like Judo and jiu-jitsu, and less violent arts dedicated more to personal health like tai chi and qi gong, there’s a little bit of everything and something for everyone to discover, both about other cultures and themselves.


Check Out the Houston Waterworks

The Houston underground cistern was built in 1927, and provided decades of fresh drinking water, acting as the city’s first water reservoir for years until a leak rendered it unusable. Since then, the cistern has been developed into an 87,500-sq.-ft. historic space for Houstonites and tourists alike to visit and marvel at. It is currently only accessible within certain limits, but will become a temporary art installation.


Learn How to Cook

Cooking is more than just an essential life skill, or a way to avoid going hungry – it can be an artform, and a great way to pass the time while sober in Houston and delve into new cultures through fresh ingredients and foreign tastes. Explore the world on your dinner plate, or simply experiment with certain recipes and ideas to create your own spin and flair – the world of cooking gives you plenty of room to get creative, and is its own reward.


Spend the Day at the Project Row Houses

A community-based arts project based in Houston’s Third Ward, the Project Row Houses are the physical embodiment of local African-American art. Composed of a group of shotgun houses, restored in 1993, these houses serve as an art gallery. Perusing through them can be a great way to experience a piece of local culture while sober in Houston.


Take a Ferry to Crystal Beach

Stretching across a full 7 miles of the Bolivar peninsula, taking a ferry from Houston and spending the day at Crystal Beach isn’t just a fun outing in the summers, but presents a great opportunity to watch some wild dolphins if you keep your eyes open during the ferry rides. While not technically in Houston, the ferry ride out of town is your best bet to watch these friendly sea mammals.


Admire Kingspoint Mullet

More than just a mall slowly breaking apart off the side of the freeway, The Mullet is a massive collection of amazing graffiti art spray painted all over the old Almeda Mall. This place is a space for various famous local artists and muralists. While not officially sanctioned, The Mullet is doubtlessly proof of Houston’s artistic genius, something the city has in abundance.


Play Catch on an Open Field

Aside from going around town exploring its many places of tranquility, art and reflection, you can take the time for some much-needed emotional and physical therapy by engaging in the extremely satisfying game of catch while sober in Houston.


Explore Your Spirituality at Rothko Chapel

Based on the works of influential painter Mark Rothko, the Rothko Chapel is a non-denominational chapel meant to help anyone of any belief or tradition come to a place where they can pray or meditate, contemplate, and reflect. These are all incredibly important for addiction treatment – in order to truly overcome addiction, you have to be able to face what you might have done in the past, and forgive yourself.


Hit Up the Public Library

Public libraries are more than just a place for reading – that’s what you have a couch at home for. Instead, you could pop by the library and see what kind of community events they have going on, or get involved in one of the many possible community engagements the library organizes to help the city, and provide resources for educating kids.


Visit the Art Car Museum

A must-see for anyone with even a modicum of interest in all things car and vintage, the Houston Art Car Museum is the perfect installation to take a trip through the history books of the American automobile. From old builds to car-based art installations, the Art Car Museum is an amazing place to head to in search of new ideas, or just for fun.

Ultimately, the idea behind finding new things to do while sober in Houston and undergoing addiction treatment isn’t to distract yourself from the temptation of addiction, but to rediscover a new way to live life and enjoy it, as well as building new hobbies and finding new personal triumphs along the way. Hobbies – especially the constructive kind – can bring a lot of good by acting as coping mechanisms for many of life’s hardships.

This list is comparatively tiny to the sheer volume of activities and bustling opportunities in Houston. One long tour through the city is never the same as the last, and you’ll always find something new – a new place to discover, a new thing to do, a new sight to see, a new sound to hear.

AS long as you keep your eyes, ears, and mind open, you’ll find that live can be exciting, fun and fulfilling without a single drop of alcohol, or any other substance.


Benefits Of Sobriety

Benefits of Sobriety | Transcend Texas

The benefits of sobriety include many instantaneously obvious perks, the biggest being that you’re guaranteed survive your addiction days.

But beyond the fact that you get to live past an early age and stay sane enough to experience life around you as it occurs, there are many benefits of sobriety – many of which become apparent quite early on in recovery, and some of which become major perks down the line, decades after.

It goes without saying that staying sober is very difficult, especially at first. But it’s absolutely worth every bit of emotional energy and stress. Here are a few of the benefits of sobriety:


Better Health

Drug addiction causes different health problems largely depending on the drugs you took. For example, alcohol is notorious for causing liver damage – but excessive alcohol intake can also lead to obesity-related illnesses, as well as kidney damage, and even brain damage.

Excessive stimulants, such as amphetamines and cocaine, can cause serious heart strain and increase your chance of a stroke, as well as reducing appetite and often leading to unhealthy weight loss and nutrient deficiency.

Right off the bat, the first thing you can count on when going sober is that you’re going to be healthier. Every drug comes with side effects, but their addictive nature means that over time, substance abuse is likely to leave some long and lasting scars both physically and mentally.

While some cases of abuse are so severe that permanent damage is inevitable, a healthy lifestyle after years of abuse can still give you an excellent quality of life and improve both your mental and physical health. However, reversing the effects of drug use to reap the benefits of sobriety may take months, or years, and a disciplined healthy lifestyle.


Better Looks

Even though many manage to hide it during initial stages of abuse, excessive substance use does often leads to excessive weight gain (through alcohol) or weight loss (through stimulants). In both cases, the appetite-suppression or junk calories of drug consumption leads to the development of terrible eating habits, and deficiencies.

In addition to often leading people to neglect their nutrition, prolonged substance abuse may lead to other illnesses, a weakened and assaulted neuroimmune system, poor skin health (either due to the drugs themselves, poor nutrition, bad hygiene or self-harm), and a very messy or unattractive appearance due to memory loss, frequent blackouts and more.

More Time

Being addicted takes time. It takes time to find and procure drugs, it takes time to get high, and it takes an especially long time to recover from a high. Moreover, the time lost in blackouts or in emergency rooms further lends credence to the argument that one of the benefits of sobriety and giving up drugs can save you an enormous amount of time. Sobriety isn’t just about skipping out on a high, but also about avoiding the risks and side effects of long-term excessive drug abuse.

It’s not just that you lose time through addiction – you also lose the time spent forging friendships and working your way up the ladder in your own personal career. Many people go through recovery having a long road ahead of them when it comes to making up for their past mistakes – and making up for that lost time is impossible without that first crucial step towards lasting recovery.


More Money

Addiction is costly. One reason why it often ruins people financially is because there is a drug for every class and economic status. The more money someone has, the more they can afford expensive designer drugs – and as a person’s financial status changes, they will find another, much more affordable (and potentially more dangerous) way to get high.

Extreme examples include using mouthwash or other cheap toiletries as substitutes for alcohol, or even worse, synthesizing drugs at home and risking injury or death in the process.

Even just skipping the booze can massively change the way you spend your money, and in up to 7 percent of men, it could save you over $100 a week. For people with serious addiction issues, and a multitude of different substances, the benefits of sobriety could completely change their finances and even help them get their leg up on life again.


Stronger Relationships

Addiction tears through romantic relationships like a knife through butter – it’s incredibly difficult to deal with being in a relationship with an addict, and it is equally difficult to nurture a relationship with someone while you struggle with addiction.

In the short-term, the solution is to put the relationship on ice, or use it to empower yourself and your journey through recovery. Being in a committed relationship with another human being is more than having a roommate or a good friend. Loyalty and admiration for one another can be considered the tentpoles of a successful relationship – and when you’re struggling with addiction, compromising and making selfless choices can be incredibly hard. You’re compelled, more than ever before, to indulge and give in to personal temptations – and in turn, you’re often bound to hurt the people you love the most before things get better.

But by earnestly quitting and going sober, you have a shot at reviving or strengthening these bonds, and bringing the relationship back stronger than ever before.


Stronger Friendships

Much like romantic relationships, friendships can be torn apart by addiction. While your friends aren’t as intimately close to you as two people in a committed relationship would be, the bond between friends still means that addiction can cut a swathe through more than just your own life, and leave those you care about hurt by your actions.

Mending those relationships, and creating stronger friendships is one of the benefits of sobriety and the recovery process. Not only that – often, sobriety gives you the opportunity to make brand new friends as well, and meet all sorts of interesting people.


The Opportunity to Live Life

Ultimately, you’ll never live life again if you choose to reject sobriety. Being high is no way to spend life. You miss out on everything that makes life great – your mind clouds over, your senses go dull, and you gradually lose the ability to remember things. That is, in more ways than one, death rather than life.

But by going sober, you regain the ability to see life as it is, and live it. That can come with pain and sadness, and with the burden of seeing life through a clear mind, but it also comes with joy, happiness, and the potential to feel the love and admiration of your closest friends and family for years to come.


6 Ways to Help Your Recovery in Houston

Recovery In Houston | Transcend Texas

If you’re in the city of Houston, then you’ll know that there’s really no shortage of things to do and places to check out without sipping so much as a drop of alcohol. However, if you’re coming from a life of reckless drinking or regular drug use, then there’s probably a lot you haven’t had a look at in a while – or ever. Houston is full of opportunities of sober adventures to help your recovery in Houston if you know where to look.

And it’s important to have some adventure, especially during recovery in Houston. People make the mistake of thinking that sober living is just boring, bland and meaningless. In contrast, it’s the absolute opposite. It’s about experiencing the radiance of life without any of the fog brought about by a high. This isn’t about sitting around in a circle crocheting (although there’s nothing wrong with that if it’s what you’re into) – it’s about making new discoveries, meeting new people and finding new hobbies, all while being 100% yourself during your recovery in Houston.

If you’re struggling to find new things to do during your recovery in Houston, here are 6 ideas.


Find Friends In Houston

Houston is a big place, with a population of over 2 million – making it the most populous city in the state of Texas, and one of the best places in Texas for meeting new people and discovering new sights during your recovery in Houston. There are a couple ways to go about that.

The most obvious in our day and age is through the Internet. Like any major city, Houston went digital a few years ago – you can get around, find restaurants and seek out events all through the palm of your hand. You can also find new friends through online meetup apps and websites, which let you sort through potential group meetups by interest, and check into local groups on social media websites to ask around for hangout spots and make new buddies.

Or you can go the old-fashioned route, and just go straight to where the people are. Head out into a city district of your choosing, and talk to people at local sports clubs, theaters, or community centers. Either way, finding people to enjoy sober life with can be helpful for recovery in Houston.


Hang Out In Cafes

If you loved bar-hopping, drinking in the atmosphere of loud clubs and quiet lounges, then opt for the sober alternative – cafes. They come in all shapes and sizes, and many go through great lengths to set themselves apart from the regular old Starbucks down the block. If you love coffee, tea, or baked goods, make it your new mission to discover your favorite little caffeinated book reading spot in the city while enjoying recovery in Houston.


Check Into A Gym

Exercise does an excellent job at working off stress and keeping addiction at bay, while helping your recovery in Houston from the effects of addiction – and it also provides you with a great excuse to make new friends, set personal goals, and make massive physical changes to your body and the way you feel.

You don’t have to go to a strength gym or pop into Planet Fitness and spend an hour on the treadmill – you can join other clubs or classes geared towards a fitness choice of your own, from yoga to football to karate, and everything in between.


Volunteer At A Houston Charity

There are several charities and volunteer spots in Houston who regularly look for people available to help, whether that means helping cook at soup kitchens or distributing blankets among the poor.

Not only do you make a difference in someone’s day, but you get to feel like you’re doing a little to give back to the city, and give back to others.

The Houston region is still dealing with the aftermath of flooding from earlier this year in some places – donating to local organizations and lending a hand at reconstruction efforts can also go a long way to making a change.


Check Out A Sobriety Community For Your Recovery In Houston

There are plenty of Houston sober living and sobriety communities looking for people who struggle to stay sober, and need the help with recovery in Houston. This is especially true for people straight out of rehab, who often struggle to deal with all the new challenges of sober living, and need a little help getting back into the rhythm of living life without drugs or alcohol.


Go On A Houston Adventure

Houston and the surrounding area has plenty of adventurous outdoor activities for groups, families and friends. If you’re not the outdoorsy type, then this obviously isn’t an option for you – but if you don’t mind doing a little exploring and like to take the time now and again to rediscover nature, then you might be surprised what Houston has to offer in that regard.

There are plenty of things to do and places to see that aren’t mentioned here at all. It’s all up to you to head out there and give life a chance – and see what comes around for you to be discovered during your recovery in Houston. If you’re the more cautious type, there are plenty of online resources that are perfect not just for tourists, but for long-time Houstonians looking for a new adventure or a potential treat.

You really don’t need alcohol to have a good time. In fact, in all of these cases, alcohol will just make your experience much worse.


5 Adrenaline-Boosting Activities To Fuel Your Sobriety

5 Adrenaline-Boosting Activities To Fuel Your Sobriety | Transcend Texas

Recovery isn’t always a piece of cake. Okay, that’s probably the understatement of the century. In the first 12 months after dedicating yourself to sober living, finding ways to have fun can become a separate challenge in its own right. Boredom (the recovering addict’s biggest nemesis) can strike and increase our risk of relapse. Your energy levels may reach an all-time low as your brain’s chemistry resets and adapts to this new normal.

For people who relied on substances to motivate or energize them through the day, even just getting through work or daily tasks can seem daunting. The concept of having “fun” without your drug or behavior of choice might seem as foreign as learning to use chopsticks for the first time, but it is possible!

If you’ve been feeling bleak, restless, and bored with your new sober living lifestyle, it may be time to dial up the notch a bit. Finding new ways to boost adrenaline and endorphins in a way that’s healthy and safe is not only possible but also highly recommended. These adrenaline-boosting activities will have your heart pumping and your excitement level skyrocketing, all without the need for drugs.

Better still, they’ll provide you with valuable insight about your personality along the way.


A great many recovering addicts take up jogging or running after detox, and with good reason: it boosts adrenaline and improves overall health when undertaken correctly. Fitness Magazine states that just five to 10 minutes per day can significantly decrease your risk of cardiovascular events like heart attacks and stroke, improve joint strength, and even provide you with much-needed meditative alone time. If that’s not enough to convince you, some studies show a distinct link between running, faster physical recovery, and fewer drug cravings over time.

There’s also the “runner’s high” many people experience when they run; this feeling is tied to happiness-boosting brain chemicals, and may help to reduce stress and depression. The term “run it off” is very commonly heard in addictions therapy groups simply because running can let you “burn off” negative emotions like anger, sadness, or despair.

Psychologically, running teaches us to set reasonable goals, how to judge our own capabilities, and how to be confident in our physical and emotional strength, too.

So how can you make running a part of your everyday life? First, understand that it’s not as easy as slapping on the trainers and running for 30 minutes. That’s too much and too fast. First, see your doctor and have a full physical. If he or she approves, start with a 5-minute walk or jog one to two times per day. Then, slowly work towards 30 to 60 total minutes per day.

High-Impact Cardio & Aerobics

Craving company and feeling a bit restless, bored, and lonely? High-impact cardio or aerobics may be just the ticket to kick you out of that funk. Fast-paced routines like spinning, Tae Bo, and aerobic dance get you moving to the tune of fun, energizing music, picking up your heart rate and boosting adrenaline while improving overall health.

Which formats are best? The answer isn’t simple; it can differ from person to person. If you’re new to exercise in general, try starting with water aerobics for low-impact, high-energy fun. If you’re in fairly good physical shape, you have more options. The average, otherwise healthy individual should be fine to take up a basic 20-minute aerobic, spinning, or Pilates routine quite easily.

High-impact cardio is an experience best had in the comfort of others, so hit up your local gym or studio and join a group whenever possible. Excitement is contagious, and you’ll get an adrenaline boost simply from being around others who are having good, clean fun.

Rock or Mountain Climbing

Climbing the walls with boredom in recovery? Put two feet on solid ground again and save your climbing for the real deal – rock climbing. This timeless, ancient sport has been around for centuries, and it often seems that humans just have an innate nature to climb on top of the world around them. As children, we climb rocks, trees, and occasionally, objects we shouldn’t in the living room, much to our parent’s chagrin. I was often labeled a mountain goat for the same reason in childhood; if it was there, I was going to climb on top of it and feel like I owned the world.

There’s just something intrinsically thrilling about climbing. It gets your heart pumping, forces you to think on your feet, and requires you to sharpen your focus and take in the environment around you. Physically, it improves muscle strength and coordination, and may even reduce the risk of cardiovascular events.

Mentally/emotionally, it teaches you how to set and achieve reasonable goals, how to persevere, and how to be confident in your ability to make decisions, even when under pressure. It isn’t difficult to outline exactly how each of those could benefit someone in recovery.

Before you run out and start scaling the nearest cliff, understand that safety is important. Find a local club or organization and have someone teach you how to climb safely and properly. Never, ever climb alone or without equipment – doing so is dangerous and becomes less about enjoying healthy, safe adrenaline-boosting activities and more about putting yourself at risk.

Scuba Diving

Live near the ocean or maybe a lake? If so, you’re in luck. You’re one of the very fortunate few who probably have access to scuba diving – an activity that gives you a first-hand glimpse into an entire world most of us will never see. Scuba diving isn’t particularly taxing (though better cardiovascular health is possible from proper breath management and swimming), so it’s not the exercise itself that boosts adrenaline here; it’s the wonder of the underwater world.

Discovering fish, coral, plants, and shells up close and first hand induces a feeling that’s seldom found in other activities. You become the Jacques Cousteau of the recovery world, boldly going where no man (well, okay, few men, anyway) have ever gone before. That feeling of childlike wonder and amazement is hard to find in recovery, especially if you relied upon substances for excitement.

If you can afford to do so, breaking free of your everyday experience and heading to Costa Rica or the Pacific Islands will afford you one of the most sensational experiences you’ll ever have. But even just exploring the closest underwater environment? That’s pretty amazing, too.

Skiing, Snowboarding & Tobogganing

Last, but certainly not least, is downhill skiing, snowboarding, and tobogganing. All three of these winter sports let you indulge your inner child and fly down the hill super-fast. Get going good enough, or learn to take ramps and jumps, and you may even find that it feels like you’re flying. It’s the sheer speed and joy experienced that’s the ticket to happiness in these three iconic winter sports, so the next time the snow hits, snuggle up in a snowsuit and head out into the frigid cold for some fun.

If you have a local ski hill nearby, take a beginner’s skiing or snowboarding class to help you learn the basics. Most hills will rent you both boots and equipment for the duration of your stay. Set yourself basic, reasonable goals and continue to practice patiently. Even though you start out on the bunny hill, you will eventually make it to the black diamond runs. Good things come with time and proper safety precautions, and you’ll find your confidence growing right along with your skill.

Don’t have a local ski hill? Take a drive around and find a good hill that doesn’t end in a roadway. Break out the equipment and make use of nature’s natural ski hills all around you. Wondering what to do if you don’t get snow? Just switch things up and get out on the water for a bit of wakeboarding or water skiing instead.

It’s easy to get into a rut in recovery. Attend meetings. Go to therapy. Eat. Shower. Rinse, lather repeat. All of these are crucial to your success, but so is having a bit of fun and excitement now and again. Remember, whatever adrenaline-boosting activity you choose, it’s important that you move forward safely and with guidance. It’s not about just jumping into the path of danger without any consideration for your health. It’s about is honing your ability to take positive risks as you develop new and healthy hobbies.

What Does “Having Fun” Mean To You?

What Does "Having Fun" Mean to You? | Transcend texas

When you were addicted to alcohol and drugs, you might have developed an idea of fun. You might have concluded that to have fun, you’ve got to be high or drunk. You’ve got to be in an altered state of consciousness in order to do things you might not otherwise do (like act wild and crazy or just to be funny). You might have concluded that without alcohol or drugs, you’re boring and you’re friends are boring.

Truth is, you can have fun while sober too. You may have to change your idea of fun. You might also need to change some of your tastes and preferences when it comes to fun. Just like when you’re in a new country and you’re trying new foods, you learn to like things you thought you wouldn’t at first. Your tastes change by the time you go home and suddenly you’re eating foods you weren’t open to before.

In the same way, your tastes with exciting and enjoyable activities need to change. You might have enjoyed the thrill of being drunk while riding on a motorcycle. But obviously there’s a huge danger there. With the excitement of substance abuse come major risks, which is what likely prompted you to get sober. With the life change that sobriety brings, you may need to find new ways to enjoy yourself.

To find out what fun might mean to you, here is a list of effects that pleasurable and enjoyable experiences have on people:

  • Makes you lose track of time.
  • Puts a smile on your face.
  • Helps you genuinely feel connected to others.
  • Makes you feel good about life.
  • Puts you in a spontaneous mood.
  • Naturally gives you a feeling of freedom.
  • Helps you feel outrageous.
  • Gives you a feeling that you’re going with the flow.
  • Helps you feel a lack of responsibility.
  • Makes you feel carefree.
  • Makes you laugh.
  • Brings you a feeling of excitement.
  • Connects you with the stillness inside.
  • Allows you to take your responsibility hat off for awhile.
  • Makes you feel happy.
  • Helps you feel playful.
  • Lets you experience something new.

To experience these effects, here are some suggestions for getting the excitement out of life without drugs or alcohol:

Be Creative

One of the best ways to discover spontaneity is to get creative. And you can do that in a number of ways – writing a song, playing music, painting, dancing, or sculpting. Let yourself experience the pleasure of creativity.

Spend Time with Friends

You might not be getting wasted, but sometimes, having a good roaring laugh with your friends can be very rewarding. You might feel the connection you have with them and enjoy the rolling laughs. Like exercise, laughing too is known for having many health benefits, including immediately lightening one’s mood.

Listen to Music

There is an incredible amount of passion and vitality that can be found in the lyrics as well as in the notes of many songs. Plus, music can touch people in ways that nothing else can. It can bring inspiration, clarity of vision, and stir up our own passions.


As described above, travel can stretch a person in positive ways. There’s something about following wherever your heart leads and not having a care in the world. Traveling can bring the excitement of being on the open road or in a new country and meeting new friends.

Set a Goal for Yourself

One of the greatest feelings to have is one of accomplishment, especially with something you didn’t think you could do. If you set a goal and you work toward it day by day, you’re likely to reach it. And doing so, can bring great emotional and psychological rewards.

Have a Good Workout

Many men and women find excitement in running on the treadmill and firing away at a punching bag. Plus, when you see that you’re body is getting more tone and fit, you’ll probably experience some satisfaction and enjoyment. But you can also experience pleasure right in the act of working out when those endorphins are released in the brain. In fact, regularly working out actually comes with many health benefits that can support your mental, emotional, and physical recovery from addiction.

Pick Up an Old Hobby

If addiction forced you put aside something you were passionate about, now can be a time to pick that up again. It might have been riding a bike, playing the guitar, or learning about the stars. Now that you’re sober return to what brought you pleasure naturally.

These are a few suggestions for experiencing true fun in your life. Although an addiction might have taught you that you need to use substances to have fun, you can turn that around and enjoy your life substance-free.


If you or someone you know needs help managing the recovery process, contact us today to see how we can help: 877-394-8810