Stay Sober with a Daily Addiction Recovery Checklist

Written by Chloe Nicosia

Stay Sober with a Daily Addiction Recovery Checklist: How to Make and Accomplish Short Term Goals for Substance Abuse

When I got out of treatment back in early 2015, I left feeling fully equipped with all the tools I needed to stay sober outside of a treatment center. To my credit, I started out strong, making 12 step meetings regularly, getting a new job, and keeping up with my sponsor. However, almost half a year later I relapsed and realized I had a lot of work to do before I would ever be in a place of true sobriety. That was when I first heard about an addiction recovery daily checklist, a tool that would later be suggested to me by a family member who had gone through addiction recovery previously.

While this should seem obvious enough, I’m going to state it plainly to make sure the point isn’t ignored, an addiction recovery checklist isn’t going to solve all your problems. It isn’t going to do all the heavy lifting in your recovery either, but what it will do is help you set and achieve goals for yourself, and I’m a firm believer that setting short term goals for substance abuse is an extremely important part of the recovery process.

How Can An Addiction Recovery Daily Help?

One thing you learn pretty quickly when you start inpatient treatment, or any form of addiction treatment really, is that a certain amount of structure is paramount to creating a healthy lifestyle. While the vast majority of recovering addicts haven’t been living a healthy lifestyle for a long portion of their lives, it’s important to start doing so now if you want to make your sobriety last any serious amount of time. In this case, that means setting short term goals for substance abuse, and creating some sort of accountability for your addiction recovery checklist.

Creating an addiction recovery daily checklist can help create a schedule for yourself. For example, during my first 90 days back in recovery I had “attend a 12 step meeting” at the top of each days checklist. I also told friends and family that was a goal of mine. That meant that people would notice if I wasn’t following up on my commitment, and it also meant that I had a small reminder of that commitment each day. Not to mention, there was also a certain amount of satisfaction that was afforded to me each day when I checked that box next to the goal.

Using an Addiction Recovery Checklist to Set Short Term Goals for Substance Abuse

In addition to feeling like I just threw away a good chunk of clean time, my relapse left me without a job and with a solid amount of hospital debt. Something that isn’t an uncommon occurrence when it comes to recovering addicts and using. Those two things immediately went onto my addiction recovery checklist when I started creating and using one regularly. While getting a new job was a short term goal, paying off a couple thousand dollars was a long term goal for me, and it was something I would have to work towards regularly to manage.

That meant taking small steps everyday to ensure that I would meet my goal. To help encourage myself, I would write short term goals near the bottom of my addiction recovery daily checklist, and write smaller daily goals near the top. The aim for my short-term goals was to work towards the larger goals, or to help reinforce my sobriety as best as I could. For example, when I was still working to pay off the hospital bills, I would use goals like “seek out extra job opportunities” or “find cheaper alternatives for daily lunches” on my checklist. Once I started saving more, I would list harder goals like “put $150 into my savings each week.” and I would further it from there.

While this can be a time consuming process, it really helps set certain goals and problems into perspective. It also breaks short term goals for substance abuse down into smaller attainable goals that can be accomplished a little easier, until eventually you accomplish your short term goal. And these short term goals can be anything you want them to be, you could put down things like exercise, call your mom, write down something you are grateful for. You get the point.

Overall, an addiction recovery checklist is an extremely impactful tool during recovery, and it’s one I would recommend to anyone trying to maintain their sobriety. In fact, having a daily checklist is something that anyone trying to better themselves could find a use for.

If you are looking for more ways to maintain your sobriety, or you are still trying to get there, do not hesitate to call Better Addiction Care at 1.800.429.7690. We’ll help you find the right addiction treatment or after-care plan that meets your needs.