When you’re looking into rehab for a substance abuse problem, you’ll run across discussions on life skills quite frequently. Knowing what life skills are and actually using them are two entirely different things. Learn more about how life skills integrate with rehab.

man learns cooking and other life skills in rehab

How Addiction Diminishes Life Skills

Everyone has certain sets of skills. Some of them are stronger while others may still be developing. At the root of a substance abuse problem, you frequently find stressors that exceed someone’s coping skills. His or her drug of choice becomes a numbing agent that keeps uncomfortable thoughts at bay.

Because the development of coping and other life skills stops, some of them diminish in strength. Add to this the fact that being the victim of an addiction erodes self-confidence and self-esteem. As a result, skills gradually recede. Eventually, dealing with day-to-day life becomes impossible, and someone in this situation may choose to self-isolate.

Characteristics You Might be Missing

Even as the life skills you need in your situation differ from those that someone else might require, there are commonalities:

  • Interpersonal interactions. Making eye contact, shaking hands with a firm grip, and respecting personal space become innate after years of practice. For drug users who propel themselves into self-imposed isolation, these skills can weaken. In particular, the confidence to function in a social setting erodes.
  • Independent living. When substance abuse is the focal point of your daily life, nutrition and personal hygiene can fall by the wayside. Cleaning your home, doing laundry, and appreciating a healthy lifestyle cease to matter. Without retraining in this area, the relapse prevention stage of recovery is almost impossible.
  • Stress management. Stressors are most likely among the reasons why you reached for the drug or alcohol the first time. When you return home after rehab, the same stresses still exist. Unless you develop coping skills during your time at the facility, you’ll face the same trouble again.
  • Anger management. Strong emotions, lashing out at those around you, and fear of loss become stressors. Making mistakes in this arena quickly lessens the belief that you can live without the numbing of drugs. Because anger is one of the most destructive emotions, re-learning how to deal with it is crucial.

Crestview Recovery provides skills training with hands-on lessons. Rather than following a curriculum-only approach, each treatment modality incorporates some keys for the formation of these elements. Examples include trauma therapy, dual diagnosis programs, and family groups.

The Connection between Needed Skills and Relapse Prevention

Relapse prevention is the ultimate goal of any rehab program. It’s not enough to break the physical dependence on a drug or alcohol. Instead, you should graduate from the program and transition to a life that makes sobriety a realistic option. Achieving this goal is possible when you’ve discovered how to replace destructive habits with healthy ones.

Remember that a relapse is not the same as failure. For many, it is a temporary bump on the road to lasting sobriety. Getting back on track is possible. In fact, many overcome a temporary low with a continued honing of their growing skill sets, which may include:

  • Placing emphasis on fitness options and nutritious meal choices.
  • Building a stable home environment through scheduling and accountability.
  • Achieving independence with stable employment and a regular income.
  • Working on peer relationships, friendships, and interpersonal skills.
  • Improving mental and physical health with the help of physicians and prescribed therapies.

Are Your Life Skills up to Par?

If you’ve been thinking about ending dependence on drugs or alcohol but don’t know how to live without it, there’s help. You don’t have to give in to substance abuse because you don’t think you have options. Instead, the friendly therapists at Crestview Recovery partner with you to work toward the goal of lifelong sobriety. We use the following types of therapy to help you get back on your feet.

Call 866-262-0531 today to make the change!