Going to a rehab clinic is a big step toward taking back your life and becoming a happier and healthier person. But, as with any big step you are about to take in your life, you may feel immobilized by fear. After you make your move, the rest will fall into place, but actually making the first move can be the hardest part.
Planning ahead will make it a little easier to take that first step. Here are a few things that experts from this top Georgia drug rehab clinic and others recommend you do to get yourself ready for rehab so that you get off to the right start:
Tie Up Loose Ends at Home
You may be in rehab for several weeks or several months. Life will go on without you outside rehab, such as a phone bill that will keep coming or a job that will need to be done in your absence. You must make provisions for these responsibilities while you are gone.
Let your boss know that you will be going into rehab and take your Family and Medical Leave Act. Your job should be held for you for when you get back, and you can help your boss train the person who is going to fill in for you on the tasks that you do.
If you are a parent, make arrangements for someone to take care of your children, such as your co-parent or other family members. Your children will need to stay with these people while you are gone, and you will need to let the caretakers know about your children's schedules and everything they need.
Put your bills on autopay or put someone in charge of paying them. Ask someone to collect your newspapers or water your plants. Tie up as many loose ends as you can before you enter rehab.
Pack the Essentials
Every rehab facility will provide some basics for you, such as a bed and sheets. But other offerings will vary from place to place, so it is important that you bring along a few things to keep yourself comfortable and to take care of yourself while you are away. Bring along your favorite throw, a good book that you love re-reading, and a picture of your family. Bring your clothes and your toiletries.
Don't worry too much about what you pack. You can always have someone bring you items that you forget later. The most important thing is to get yourself to the facility, not your stuff. Check that anything you do bring doesn't violate the rules for the facility.
Manage Your Anxiety
Going into rehab can be an overwhelming prospect. You are about to do something that will hopefully change your life for the better. You may be feeling anxious about whether you are up to the task. Or you may have anxiety over the conversations you will have to have with family and friends who you have wronged. Or maybe you will feel anxiety about the withdrawal process.
Now is the time to start practicing tools to manage your anxiety. You can use relaxation techniques such as meditation, deep breathing, or muscle relaxation. You can practice calming exercises like yoga or tai chi. You can also get cognitive behavioral therapy that teaches you how to manage your feelings and your symptoms. Some rehab facilities will have therapists who can continue this cognitive behavioral therapy with you so that your progress will not be inhibited.
Enjoy the People in Your Life
Now is the time to stay as positive as possible and avoid any triggers that can set you back on your path to recovery. Spend time with the people in your life who you love and who support what you are doing. You can talk through your feelings with them, or you can just spend time together having fun and relaxing. Both scenarios will do you good and help prepare you to do the tough work you are going to do in rehab.
Keep a Journal
Rehab is a journey of self-discovery and growth. Start documenting that journey by keeping a journal. You can look back at how you were feeling during these early days to draw insights during therapy later or to draw strength when you are struggling.
Bring the journal with you to rehab and keep track of your progress. If you ever doubt what you are doing, you can read the journal and feel empowered. You can also look at the early days when you were struggling and reaffirm to yourself why you went to rehab in the first place.
Rehab is a big undertaking. Get yourself physically and mentally ready for it by following these tips. Then rely on all the support available to you as you start building your new life and recover from the wounds that led to your addiction.