Volunteering in Recovery – Why it Matters and Ways to Give Back

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Managing your time in alcohol recovery Pasadena is important. Too much time can lead to boredom, and too little time can lead to stress. One way to balance your time is by volunteering. Volunteering fills your schedule with a valuable activity that won’t consume you. Pick an organization that you care about and the hours you are comfortable with.

Let’s explore the benefits of volunteering during recovery and ideas for getting started in your own community.

What are the Benefits of Volunteering While in Recovery?

Recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction is a lifelong process, though things do get easier over time. The reason why we say recovery is long-term is because people who were addicted have a higher risk of becoming dependent again. Therefore, you have to continue making smart choices to avoid falling back into old habits.

Volunteering is good for everyone, but it’s especially beneficial for those in recovery. Here are the advantages to volunteering after alcohol rehab in California.

Find Your Purpose in Life

This is probably the most important benefit of volunteering. Addiction is an evil disease, and it takes away a person’s sense of purpose. This is why many addicts have the attitude of not caring. Hopefully, you are starting to see that you are worth something and that addiction is not who you are, but a part of your life.

Volunteering is one of the most valuable ways to discover your greater purpose in life. Maybe you are a great listener or have a way with animals. Perhaps you have a particular talent that you would like to teach others, such as knitting. Helping others puts you in a selfless position where you can explore your strengths and find your place in this world.

Prevent Boredom and Isolation

Volunteering fills your calendar with meaningful activities. You can choose the times and dates that you are comfortable with, allowing you to increase activity and decrease boredom without overwhelming your schedule. Choose an organization or issue that you are passionate about and start making a difference. For example, you can sort clothing for a women’s shelter or clean cages at an animal rescue.

Give Back to Others

Surely, you wouldn’t be here without the help of someone special in your life. Think about all of the people who have supported drug rehab in Pasadena CA: a parent, a friend, a therapist, your 12-step sponsor, etc. People have given to you to help you get clean and sober, so now it’s time to give back to others who could use help. No matter how small your efforts are, they can have a huge impact on someone else.

Create New Opportunities

Some people are able to expand their network by doing volunteer work. If people see that you are dependable, reliable and passionate about your work, they may consider you for a job. At the very least, they will be happy to write a recommendation for future work. You can also use your volunteer experiences to sharpen skills and bolster your resume.

Meet New People

Even if you don’t consider yourself a “people person,” it’s still important to have healthy relationships. By building friendships with others, you can enrich your social life and build a stronger support system that is conducive to sober living Pasadena. And, you’re already one step ahead in these relationships because you can connect over a shared passion.

Be Humble and Kind

Feeling sorry for yourself can be destructive to recovery. If you walk around feeling like a victim, it’s hard to change your ways. If you don’t change, you will get stuck in your recovery. Volunteering is an excellent way to practice humility, as you will see that others in this world have it worse.

Also, helping others puts positive energy into the world, and this brings positive energy back to you. If you put yourself in a downward spiral of feeling sorry for yourself, you’re not going to attract positive people or experiences. It’s amazing to think that you can turn this around by getting out into the world and making a difference.

Ways to Volunteer in Your Community

Many people are open and interested in helping others but aren’t sure where to start. Don’t let the fear of trying something new stop you from doing it. Below we share ideas of where to look for volunteer opportunities. You can also visit organizations like Habitat for Humanity, United Way and Create the Good to find volunteer opportunities in your area.

  • Building homes. Organizations like Habitat for Humanity give you the opportunity to build homes for the less fortunate. This is a great experience for those who enjoy being physically active and watching the fruits of their labor come to life.
  • Serving meals. Serving meals at a soup kitchen allows you to give back to others who are in need of hope and acceptance. Be open about your experience in drug detox California – it’s therapeutic for you and can help others see an end to their own battles.
  • Working at a homeless shelter. Homeless shelters always need volunteers to sort through supplies, work with youth, collect donations for the holidays and more. Imagine being able to break the cycle of poverty for some individuals.
  • Helping animals. If you love animals, working with pets can support your recovery in more ways than one. Animals have a calming effect on the body, lowering blood pressure and stress. Plus, pets don’t judge and provide an endless supply of love! Donate your time to a local shelter or rescue organization, or consider fostering a pet of your own.
  • Maintaining local parks. The parks don’t get cleaned and maintained on their own – they need volunteers to help with this! If you love being outdoors and getting sunshine and Vitamin D, this could be a great opportunity for you. Plus, you can learn about plants and animals and get more in tune with your inner self.
  • Helping others in the addiction community. Once you grow in your own alcohol recovery Pasadena, you can volunteer within the addiction community. Talk to local churches and schools about your experience. Work with individuals in treatment. Or, become a 12-step sponsor.

Volunteering is a wonderful way to support your recovery, give back to the community and find your higher purpose in life. But, if you feel that volunteering is starting to consume you, take a step back. You don’t want this to affect your own sobriety and wellbeing. Remember, every little bit counts.

To start your recovery, contact Pax House Recovery today. We are a Pasadena drug and alcohol treatment center that uses evidence-based therapeutic techniques in a positive, serene environment. Together, we can achieve long-term sobriety.