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Discussion in 'General Substance Abuse Discussion' started by Rainman, Jul 13, 2015.

  1. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    How much rest should a recovering addict get?

    I've heard it said that idle mind is the devil's workshop and for that reason believe that too much rest would be counterproductive. If you are simply sitting or lying somewhere how easy it is for you mind to stand wandering . . . to dangerous territory. Too much of it and you get bored with doing nothing and might just find it harder to resist the urge to use some drug [to beat the boredom].

    Your thoughts?
  2. MyLife

    MyLife Member

    I think that addicts, new in recovery, are very bad at having quiet, personal time. They are very uncomfortable with themselves and they are not any good at processing their feelings yet. The last thing someone new to recovery wants is time to think about all the trouble they have caused. So, yes, they need to be out doing things to keep from getting lost in their heads. It can, if they don't have a support group, lead them to the people they used to associate with, which can lead them to relapse. But it can just as easily lead them to others in recovery. It all depends on what level of support system they have in place.

    Now, there is a different kind of "rest" that is dependent on the addict and what they are coming off of. For example, with meth, a person coming down off of meth will sleep for days and days and days. They are catching up on sleep that they missed out on while using. Their brain is recovering from the stress and chemicals it was introduces to. Also, because the drug is no longer blocking the Dopamine receptors and increasing the production of the Dopamine, there is a lot less of it in their system. (A lot less than the "normal" brain uses on a daily basis) This is the cause of the depression and also a reason for the sleep that they crave since they lack enough of the motivational protein to get themselves "up and moving". This is true of most of the other drugs as well.
  3. pwarbi

    pwarbi Community Champion

    When recovering from an addiction I think one of the main problems and the reason that people will relapse is because they often find they've got too much time on their hands. All of a sudden they'll have a lot of spare time that they didn't have before so keeping busy and active is probably more important than resting.

    Obviously getting enough sleep is important for everybody but sitting around and doing nothing, can also be classed as resting and that's the most dangerous form for an addict.
  4. JoshPosh

    JoshPosh Community Champion

    One of my tricks to sobriety is to stay busy and exhaust yourself til the end of the day. We all need a good night sleep and staying busy through out the day is key to having a good night rest/sleep. Now if you were talking about being lazy and counterproductive, then I don't call that resting. That what I call wasting time.
  5. srofltank

    srofltank Member

    Resting is obviously important, but for a recovering addict you shouldn't just be sitting there and thinking about life too much.. you should act! Go to the gym, play some sports, there are a lot of productive ways to keep yourself in shape both mentally and physically. At the end of the day is the best time to get rest, but you should always try being productive.
  6. kassie1234

    kassie1234 Community Champion

    I think for me the key to getting sober was staying busy. I filled my days with work, exercise (had to start slow, of course) spending time with positive influences, and a few other hobbies. If I sat around with nothing to do that would have been too much time on my hands and would likely have been spent badly!

    But rest as in sleep was crucial for me. It's the time your body gets to repair itself. So ensuring you're getting good sleep is very important.
  7. dyanmarie25

    dyanmarie25 Community Champion

    I guess there should be a balance. They should not be resting too much; they should also participate in other activities that would keep their mind off drugs or other substances. They should be productive all the time so as to feel fulfilled at the end of the day. Thus, it would motivate them even more to do well in their recovery.
  8. CallipygianGamine

    CallipygianGamine Community Champion

    Adequate sleep is important, as others have pointed out. And a certain amount of solitude/quiet time can be beneficial, but too much of it can also lead to boredom and disenchantment, thereby pushing a person over the edge. It can be tricky to find the balance, to figure out how much productivity and how much rest is enough. And it probably also depends on the individual, their personality, and their resources.
  9. Rosyrain

    Rosyrain Community Champion

    The first couple of days of recovery should be filled with as much sleep as you can possibly get. Your body has to recover from all of the damage done, and you are not necessarily thinking of drugs when you are sleeping. Once you get past the first couple of days of feeling awful, you need to get out and get busy to keep your mind off of stuff.
  10. serenity

    serenity Community Champion

    I think recovering addicts should really take their time to listen to their body clock and just sleep for as long as they want, because their body needs it. When they're awake though, it's important that they keep their minds and bodies active and preoccupied, otherwise the chances of them thinking about using drugs is very likely.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2015
  11. gracer

    gracer Community Champion

    Rest is indeed very important not only for recovering addicts but for everyone in general. With rest we get to revitalize ourselves and renew our minds for the next goals in life that will come our way. It is a time where we learn to reflect on our life and appreciate life as it is.

    For recovering addicts, being to hard on themselves while they are on recovery will turn into negative outcomes and can even turn into relapse. One needs to also relax a bit and appreciate what he/she has accomplished. In this way, he/she also gets a clearer view of what has been done and what needs to be done more.

    It is not a bad thing to rest as long as you learn how to determine when it's also time to move on from resting well.

    This may not be related to addiction but this can also serve as a reflection for everyone of us to take some time to rest when we are feeling tired about things in our lives. It's a coincidence because I have just written a blog post about REST. I hope you find the time to read it too. :)
  12. Rosyrain

    Rosyrain Community Champion

    Rest does not even always have to require actual sleep. Your body can rest up while you lounge around on a beach on a hot sunny day with a glass of iced tea and a good book. I tend to get bored if I am just sitting at home on the couch or laying in bed all day and then my mind starts to wander.
  13. Shimus

    Shimus Community Champion

    It differs - how you are personally. Are you filled with wanderlust? Are you more of a lounging type person? Counterbalance how much you sit and rest with how much you say active, and it shouldn't matter if you're a recovering addict or not. Treat it like normal life.
  14. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    I also think it depends on the personality. But mostly it will be better to get busy on some activities to avoid thinking of the addiction or using. It will not be good to be mostly be alone when trying to recover or get rid of an addiction.
  15. sunflogun

    sunflogun Community Champion

    Rest as much as necessary, but not too much considering that the more we rest the more we have time to think and when we do that consumption will get back in our thoughts.
  16. Shimus

    Shimus Community Champion

    Indeed. The more you can laze around the more your mind will inevitably walk back towards the thoughts of consumption. Rest in equal measures to exercise; get outside see some sunlight. Go out and about, and when it's time to rest the rest will feel not only well deserved but ultimately very refreshing. And that refreshing feeling is what we're going for.
  17. LilAnn

    LilAnn Community Champion

    there are so many hobbies that are also very productive. All of hobbies work towards something new. Knit a blanket, crochet a table cloth, make a really funky looking ash tray out of clay, make clay masks to hang on the wall... etc
  18. harold

    harold Community Champion

    It is wise to keep yourself productively busy. Being lazy is not and will never be an option. I believe that the best way around is to work well during the day and rest at night. This does not mean that you need to force yourself into work even when there is nothing to be done. It is advisable to keep your mind busy so that it does not idle too much and then slip back. Be productive, don't overwork yourself and rest well. Above all, let the zeal and determination to move ahead and to conquer new heights guide you to victory. Your determination has already conquered the addiction. You need to keep yourself in good health and forge ahead.
  19. amethyst

    amethyst Community Champion

    Sometimes it's simply impossible to stay physically active all the time. Your body needs plenty of rest during recovery. Lying around and doing nothing can be highly productive for analytical and meditative purposes. You will have time to concentrate your thoughts in a positive way. Basically, you can visualize a completely new version of yourself in a new life, while resting on a couch. I regard these stages in life as essential. Once you construct a plan, all you need to do is follow it through. And there will be plenty of purposefully directed action to follow.
  20. sunflogun

    sunflogun Community Champion

    Yeah. I mean, we should not reach a point where our bodies collapse, but it's definitely a time to reach out for new experiences and be busy more than to rest.