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A modern, community-based approach to addiction treatment for Men and Women in Charleston, SC

Sober Anniversaries: The Importance of Setting Goals in Recovery

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Many people may have heard the phrase, “One day at a time.” It is perhaps the most used colloquialism in all of recovery. The reason for this is that it can be very true and helpful to an individual getting sober, especially if that individual is in early recovery. Of course, there is also a bit of a paradox in that statement because not only must it be “One day at a time,” it must also be “Many days put together for long-term success.” This paradox is a good one, as both sides of it are helpful and true. It is also emblematic of the importance of celebrating milestones and setting goals in recovery.

Setting Goals in Recovery: Understanding the Importance of Milestones

There are many milestones that happen while on the journey of recovery. Usually, they are associated with a “marker of time.” For example, this is a major milestone when someone chooses to stay sober for 24 hours. The milestones that follow usually represent a month of sobriety, 90 days, six months, one year, and then all of the subsequent years after. For many people, these markers of time are how they map out their goals in recovery.

However, not all milestones in recovery are represented by time. For example, if one is part of a Twelve Step program, the milestone they celebrate will be upon the completion of each step. Other milestones may include finishing a detox, getting a new job, reconciling a relationship, helping someone else get sober, and moving out of a sober living facility. Of course, none of these milestones would come true if an individual didn’t set forth a plan and make them part of their goals.

The Importance of Setting Goals in Recovery

Setting goals in recovery is about having a positive mission for one’s life. No longer are they being held back by alcohol or substances, so they are free to accomplish all of the goals that they once thought were no longer attainable.

Setting goals in recovery is also important because it keeps individuals accountable to their recovery plans and their recovery peers and professionals. It keeps people close to their chosen program of recovery, which is essential for avoiding a potential relapse. Also, it shows them that they can accomplish this incredibly brave, noble, and sometimes difficult task of getting and staying sober.

The Importance of Sober Anniversaries for the Individual

Sober anniversaries (also sometimes referred to as “sober birthdays”) are when an individual celebrates the day they choose to get sober. The type of day sometimes varies. Some people make their sober anniversary the day of their last drink, others make it the day they chose to enter rehab, and yet others choose the day that experienced what is known as a “spiritual awakening” as a result of the recovery work that they have put in.

Regardless of the type of day one chooses as one’s sober anniversary, the reason for the anniversary is the same: to remind oneself that recovery works and to show how far they have come. Sober anniversaries are also important to show others that they, too, can recover from addiction.

The Importance of Sober Anniversaries for Others

Many people celebrate their sober anniversary by standing in front of their recovery community (a 12-Step meeting for example) and receiving a coin or “chip” that commemorates how many years they have been sober. This is a great point of pride for many people in recovery (as it should be). But, it is not the only reason to show up and “collect a coin.”

Also, it is to show new people in recovery that they, too, can get sober if they do the work that other people are doing. It shows them that recovery “works if you work it” (as it said in many recovery meetings). Seeing someone celebrate a sober anniversary also inspires others to set their own recovery goals and to keep at it until they, too, get to celebrate their success.

The Importance of Celebrating “One Day at a Time” With Lantana Recovery

Here at Lantana Recovery, we understand that success in recovery can be both “One day at a time” and a “Lifetime of sobriety.” We also understand that it is about showing that recovery works for both our own benefit and the benefit of others.

The iconic American author Robert Collier said, “Success is the sum of small efforts – repeated day in and day out.” When one makes goals and then takes the next right action and the next right action after that, we here at Lantana Recovery have little doubt that a successful recovery is going to be the result.

Yes, recovery is about “one day at a time.” But, it is also about goals and milestones completing treatment, and celebrating sober anniversaries. Sober anniversaries are more than just a number. They represent progress and a lot of hard work. Setting goals in recovery keeps individuals motivated and helps keep them accountable to themselves and others too. People celebrating sober anniversaries inspire others in their recovery as well. If you feel like you or a loved one is struggling with issues of addiction, mental illness, or co-occurring disorders, we can help get you on the positive path to long-term recovery. For more information about setting goals and celebrating sober milestones, please reach out to Lantana Recovery today at (866) 997-2870.

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Charleston South Carolina

Charleston South Carolina

Located on the historic peninsula of Charleston, South Carolina, Lantana Recovery takes a modern approach to Substance Use Disorder treatment, offering intensive clinical care while also immersing our clients in local Charleston culture.