Mindfulness in sobriety: How to cultivate inner peace

Mindfulness in sobriety: How to cultivate inner peace

Sobriety is a lifelong journey. While you may feel elated about the benefits of experiencing life beyond addition, tough times will eventually make you question your values. Mindfulness is an excellent practice to help yourself in those moments. Learn how to cultivate inner peace in sobriety to thrive when life is great and challenging.

What is mindfulness?
Some people are always thinking about the future. It’s good to plan and set goals, but it can distract you from what you want right now. Mindfulness is the opposite of that lifestyle — it’s the practice of staying in the present moment to remain in tune with your body. It can prevent the anxiety that makes relapsing more likely, especially when stressful events happen outside your control.
How to cultivate inner peace in sobriety
People don’t feel at peace without making it their reality. These are a few ways to feel more inner peace no matter where you are in your sober journey.

1. Check in with your body
 Your body is what grounds your mind. It cultivates your physical sensations and thoughts, so check in with yourself to practice mindfulness and sobriety.
 
Ask yourself what you’re feeling. Is your foot tapping? Does your heart feel heavy with sadness? Once you know what’s happening with your emotions and physical sensations, you can consider what’s behind them.
 
Anxiety can cause numerous physical side effects like restlessness, dizziness and excessive sweating. If you know it’s causing uncomfortable sensations, you’ll know which practical ways to best deal with it. Participating in outdoor exercise to decrease your depression symptoms or calling your sponsor are better ways to reach inner peace faster than acting on impulse because your mind or body is on edge.

2. Counter your thoughts with kindness
 Addictions can come from or encourage someone’s negative self-image. Those thoughts may remain rooted in your mind even when you’ve been sober for a while. They’re mental traps that can cause your willpower to stumble unless you use mindfulness to catch them in the moment.
 
When you feel a negative thought about yourself cross your mind, let it know it serves no purpose. Release the thought and replace it with a kind belief about yourself. If you gather a list of positive statements you repeat daily, the positivity will quickly become second nature. Your mind will have less power over derailing your sober journey.

3. Consider what you can do
 Sometimes people get caught up in thoughts about what they can’t do anymore. It makes sobriety feel stifling when it’s actually opening your life to new possibilities.
 
If you struggle with thinking about sobriety as a limitation, use mindfulness to redirect your thoughts. Think about what’s within your power to support your mind or body.
 
Doing this will improve your ability to focus on what you can do right now instead of only thinking about eventual goals. Self-confidence might lead you to use other mindfulness resources, like practicing puzzles to improve your cognitive functionality instead of feeling bored.

4. Journal your emotions
 Emotional whirlpools can drag people down. When overwhelming thoughts get too loud, use a journal to write about them. They’ll turn into tangible ideas you can understand better.
 
You can also write about why the negativity isn’t true. Think about why it doesn’t control you and why you’re so much more than your worst thoughts. You’ll form your self-image with each page and quickly become your biggest cheerleader.

5. Pause before speaking
 Addictions can mask the thoughts and emotions people need to address. Part of living in sobriety means addressing those things, but you might feel out of practice. Mindfulness encourages people to pause before they speak to choose what they want to say.
 
Ask yourself what you’re feeling at that moment, and what your mind or body is trying to tell you. Communicate about those things if you need help. Instead of running from scary feelings or putting them aside for someone else’s needs, you’ll gain greater satisfaction in your relationships because your communication skills improve daily.

6. Read Mindfulness Books
 You won’t know everything about something you’re only starting to learn. Books easily fill those gaps. Invest in a few mindfulness books to learn how to make it work for your unique needs.
 
The books you bring home will guide you through helpful practices like meditation and positive habits. They’ll also make you feel less alone because they’ll cover how mindfulness helps others tackle the same frustrations confronting you in sobriety.
When to ask for help
Mindfulness is an excellent tool, but it’s also a learning process. Sometimes it might not be enough to handle your thoughts, feelings or cravings. Remember to chat regularly with your sponsor, especially if you’re just starting your sober journey.
 
Check in with them when your mindfulness habits aren’t soothing your emotional edges or when you feel too isolated. Talking with someone who understands you is an excellent resource when you’re worrying about being able to take care of yourself.
Find greater inner peace
Cultivating inner peace on the sober journey may feel challenging, but it’s not impossible. Mindfulness is an excellent way to make sobriety more enjoyable. You’ll learn more about yourself, improve your communication skills and enjoy every moment more by remaining present with tips like these.
 
By Ava Roman
Ava Roman (she/her) is the Managing Editor of
Revivalist, a women’s lifestyle magazine that empowers women to live their most authentic life. When Ava is not writing you'll probably find her doing yoga or snuggled up with her cat and a good book.

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