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A First Year Addiction Recovery Checklist

During the first year of your addiction recovery, there may come times when you feel you aren’t achieving the goals you had planned for yourself.

The first year can be challenging and it may feel as if you want to give up. However, during these times it is important to remember how far you have come and just how much better your life is free from substance abuse.

Step Away Rehabilitation Centre has developed a list of a few goals that we feel you can use as reminders and to help you stay on track of your recovery in the days and months to come.

addiction recovery - rehabilitation centre South Africa

A First Year Addiction Recovery Checklist


  • Accept that you have an addiction. Accept that your addiction has made your life unmanageable.
  • Be honest. With yourself and those around you.
  • Practice saying no.
  • Learn to identify high risk situations, and choose to avoid them.
  • Learn not to be ashamed to ask for help. Addiction recovery has a number a paths. However, the most difficult is the path walked alone.
  • Call a friend when you feel your cravings may lead to relapse.
  • Play an active role in your recovery group – Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous.
  • Recognise that talking about how you feel will help you feel better.
  • Choose a sponsor and participate in step work.
  • Remove yourself from friendship groups and friends that are still using.
  • Love yourself. Take time to appreciate yourself and your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Celebrate victories, big or small. Recovery is about making progress.
  • Look after yourself. Being physically healthy will help ease your recovery process.
  • Start a hobby or a sport.
  • Switch to a healthy diet. Develop healthy sleeping habits.
  • Let go of stress and anxiety. Learn to relax in stressful moments.
  • Rediscover how to be yourself and have fun sober.
  • Develop healthy, clean friendships.
  • Stop to re-evaluate your lifestyle every now and again to make sure you are still on track.
  • When you feel you may relapse, play the situation forward. This will help you understand what will happen if you do give in to your cravings.
  • Acknowledge your post-acute withdrawal symptoms. Ask for help if you need to.
  • Develop coping strategies for when you encounter situations that involve other people drinking or using.
  • Be grateful - For yourself, for the people who love and support you, for your 2nd chance.
  • Learn patience and have compassion for others.
  • Say good-bye to the addicted you. And welcome your new self.
  • See yourself as a person with love in your heart and not just as an addict.


Step Away Rehabilitation Centre South Africa

No one said sobriety is a walk in the park. No one said it would be easy at all. But one thing is certain, when you are sober, there is not one bad day that could compare to a bad day when you are using or drinking.

Addiction recovery is a process that takes patience and determination. If you feel you are ready to take the first step towards your recovery, please contact us.

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