Stress is an omnipresent force that permeates all aspects of life. Personal goals, relationships, professional expectations, finances, and more all carry varying degrees of this invisible adversary. Stress is unavoidable, stemming from small sources like waking up a couple of minutes late in the morning to more significant ones such as dealing with conflict at the workplace. Managing this stress is even more critical for those navigating recovery and sobriety. Finding effective ways to destress on the weekend is paramount for one’s mental health and sobriety. While your client may have their own best practices for destressing on the weekends, trying new strategies can help them continuously adapt their routines for a more relaxing break after a hard-worked week.
De-stressing is Essential
Stress can be the catalyst for any number of negative repercussions. Those in recovery may find that stress influences the prevalence of urges or cravings, even causing individuals to romanticize their use of addictive substances and threaten their hard-earned sobriety. It can also lead to persistent anxiety, depression, anger, or irritation, impacting one’s mental health and relationships. Finding a way to safely and effectively process stress is necessary for maintaining a healthy, sober lifestyle.
An individual may have reservations at times about taking time for themselves. Constant professional demands and recovery goals can prompt individuals to feel as if they always have to make some sort of conscious, active step towards their next milestone. However, this mentality is incredibly exhausting and can cause your client even more stress in the end. Distancing oneself from anxiety and engaging in personal self-care is crucial for avoiding burnout and balancing mental health. Moreover, denying this time can spawn many negative consequences for an individual’s recovery, personal, and professional life.
Everyone is allowed to enjoy themselves, and even fun games or a restful night with a movie is just as important as one’s time on the clock. Embracing a mentality that allows an individual to take time and be happy is a crucial part of an effective destressing strategy.
Turn Off Workplace Communications
Time on the weekend is a finite resource, and there is only so much of it one has before Monday morning comes knocking. Therefore, an individual must establish effective boundaries to ensure that they are getting the most out of their weekends. Turning phones off, avoiding checking emails, and otherwise distancing oneself from communications to the workplace are effective boundaries for one’s health. Not only does this help keep a person’s mind clear from unnecessary stressors, but it also keeps an individual from being called in during the weekend or otherwise compromising their earned time off.
Find a Hobby
Hobbies play an influential role in life. They allow individuals to relax with something enjoyable that is wholly their own. While there may be communities around hobbies, they are still unique and personal for each individual and shouldn’t be compromised. However, finding a hobby can be difficult.
Hobbies take many forms, and your client needs to experiment with all of their interests to find what one they enjoy most. For some, cooking is a fantastic hobby, and learning new recipes or working the grill can be great ways to distance themselves from stress while nurturing relationships with friends or family. Others may find relaxation in art or music, and others in cinema, reading, or other media types. There is no limit to what these hobbies may entail. However, it is essential to fill one’s weekend with these relaxing activities whenever possible.
Not only do hobbies help distract one’s mind from stress and process these feelings safely, but they also help those in recovery from succumbing to a well of free time or boredom. Boredom can be an unseen threat for those navigating sobriety, and too much of it can lead an individual to reconsider using addictive substances to fill the time. Keeping engaged in a hobby of any kind can help individuals further their interests and identity while staving off cravings and effectively destressing.
Look to Nostalgia
Others’ perceptions or misconceptions shouldn’t hold weight when searching for a worthwhile hobby. While some may take up new skills, such as woodworking or other creative forms, others may enjoy sitting down with a new video game, playing board games, or fiddling with old nostalgia. There can be a lot of power in both new hobbies and nostalgiac practices, and nobody should feel ashamed for finding and developing an effective and enjoyable hobby. Nostalgia can be reminiscent of a peaceful time and bring tremendous feelings of escape to your client over the weekend.
Weekends can also be a time for people to deconstruct established schedules and dance by their beat. It is a time to sleep in or even get to bed early. Rest is crucial for stress relief, and using a weekend to nap and catch up on one’s physical needs for rest continues to help destress.
Learning to destress on the weekends is a skill on its own, and we at Pacific Sands Recovery Center in Orange County can help you understand the best way to detach from stress and focus on your self-care, health, and sobriety. We know the dangerous role that stress plays in life and the unique ways it impacts your mental health or use of addictive substances. We can help you tackle how stress affects your life today. From detox and residential programs to intensive outpatient programs and beyond, we can personalize your time with us to best address your unique stresses and goals for recovery. Our small, intimate atmosphere creates a safe space to address your concerns while connecting you with peers and professionals alike. For more information on how we can create a plan that is right for you or to speak to a caring, trained staff member, call us today at (949) 426-7962.