Last Updated: November 12th, 2018

If you struggle with addiction issues, you’re far from alone. Most people recovering from addiction need some help along the way. Wholistic methods are some of the best ways to feel better about yourself and fight addiction, as well as the feelings of depression and anxiety that sometimes accompany it.

Here are seven activities you can incorporate into your life if you want to use wholistic methods to help yourself with your recovery.

Eat healthy

Person eating chicken and vegetables with fork - No chemicals requiredIt’s a fact: Eating healthily will improve your well-being and help keep your mood from spiralling into depression or anxiety. That means eating plenty of antioxidant vegetables and fruits. It means sticking to lean meats, such as chicken or fish, and eating whole grains when consuming pasta, rice or bread.

Along with eating healthy foods, avoid binge eating and junk food. Some sweets are fine, but many former addicts struggle with excessive eating of sugared junk food as well. Start by stocking your pantry and refrigerator with only the good stuff, not the bad. You’ll be far less likely to give into temptation this way.

Don’t forget water, either! Plenty of water is an important ingredient of a healthy diet. It aids digestion and keeps your system clear. You can see the difference by looking at your skin—people who drink a lot of water often have radiant skin. Strive for 64 fluid ounces (about 1.9 litres) per day, or eight glasses every couple of hours.

Meditate daily

For de-stressing, developing mindful awareness and relaxing, nothing beats meditation. For at least 10 minutes per day, sit in a comfortable position and pay attention to the spiritual side of your life. Wear loose and comfortable clothing. Choose a time when the outside world won’t intrude. Early morning and late evening can work wonders.

Guided meditation tapes can be a great way to enter a meditative state. So can listening to soothing music, rushing water, the ocean or wind chimes.

Many people find it helpful to join a group that meditates regularly. If this works for you, go for it!

Exercise regularly

Exercise has been proven to elevate a person’s mood. When we exercise, endorphins are released, which leads to more positive feelings.

A regular exercise program is also self-empowering. With this, you’ll go forward with the knowledge that you’ve taken action to make yourself stronger and feel better. Physical activity can create a virtuous circle—feeling good makes you want to feel better, so you take the action that makes you feel better (exercise), and as a result, you feel even better and stronger.

Take some time to choose an exercise you’re genuinely comfortable with. There’s no one “right” exercise method. Swimming is relaxing and works for many people, and so does running or walking, especially if you have somewhere pleasant to go, like a park.

If you prefer to have accountability and be among other people as you work out, join an exercise class at a gym. If you’re interested in learning a new sport or playing an old one again, you can join an amateur league for baseball, soccer, roller skating or nearly any sport you could possibly name.

Try Yoga or Tai Chi

Yoga and Tai Chi are both excellent methods of promoting your physical health while staying meditative and relaxed at the same time. Many gyms offer classes in both. For Yoga, you may also want to try a Yoga centre.

Many different types of Yoga exist. Some are very active and leave you sweating, while others are peaceful and meditative. Tai Chi is often offered as part of classes in Chinese culture.

Book acupuncture sessions

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese method of relieving stress, promoting health and freeing up your body’s energy to heal itself. Acupuncture practitioners will talk to you about what you most want to work on. Aches, pains, stress, depression, fatigue, headaches and more can all be treated with acupuncture.

Acupuncture treatment takes place via the insertion of very fine needles. Don’t worry—it’s painless. Many people who receive acupuncture treatment report feeling very relaxed during and after the sessions. Some even fall asleep!

Follow the right aftercare program

More than 23.5 percent of Americans struggle with addiction. Those who successfully overcome their addictions often take part in the most common aftercare programs to aid their progress. These include 12-step programs, dual-diagnosis support programs, counselling, transitional care programs and more. These programs help people understand their emotions, rebuild their relationships and emotionally establish themselves within an addiction-free lifestyle.

Get a pet

Two people each walking their dogs side by side - No chemicals requiredPerhaps a cat or dog isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think of addiction recovery. But it’s a fact that having a pet like a cat or dog will improve your health. Pets can lower your blood pressure, improve your immune system and decrease anxiety. They’re also a comfort source. There’s nothing like cuddling a purring cat or a friendly dog at the end of a stressful day.

Moreover, pets can get you out of the house, as you can walk them and make small talk with fellow pet owners. Both of these activities will help you fight depression and anxiety.

Have fun and improve your life

These seven methods are all excellent ways for you to help yourself with your recovery from addiction. Each one can improve your health, along with your mental and spiritual outlook. They’ll all aid you in fighting anxiety and depression, two conditions that can be the downfall of recovering addicts. Try to have fun with each one while you work on changing your life for the better!

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