There’s always something about the holidays that brings about a sense of goodwill and although you’re in recovery, this year shouldn’t have to be any different. Giving back is amazing choice because it’s filled with appreciation of what one already has and the open-hearted aspect of sharing some of that good fortune with someone else. Perhaps you’ve been contemplating on what to do this holiday season; no matter where you’re at in recovery, there’s always something you can do for someone else – whether it’s a kind word or a few hours of your time.
In 2014, researchers published a study in the journal Alcoholism Treatment that sought to uncover the entire addiction recovery experience. They interviewed people from a number of pathways that can be taken to addiction recovery and found that giving back specifically contributed to long-term recovery maintenance – which means that in providing good service to others, you’re not only helping them – you’re helping yourself, too. Many participants of the study noted that giving back helped them even when support, fellowship groups and more were not available to them at times during their recovery.
Giving back was also shown to increase a person’s motivation to continue helping others. As one participant stated, “…I call it a movement, the recovery movement. The movement that’s designed to make recovery as accessible as possible to as many people as possible…So this is not about me…It’s really about those who might live as a result of the work I might do.”
If you’re ready to take heed of the giving season, consider the following charitable activities:
- Help out at your treatment center. Ask your healthcare team if opportunities are available – they may even have some connections of other organizations you can speak with.
- Provide your time and energy to a local food drive. There are always people out there who are hungry and this could be an excellent way to give back.
- Write meaningful letters to those who’ve inspired you thus far in your recovery journey. You’ll reinforce your relationship with them and it will put a huge smile on their face, too.
Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.
Call us today at 1-800-646-9998 to take the next step towards your happiness and health.