by Jennifer McDougall
The first 30 days of sobriety are a critical milestone in your recovery. If you can make it through the first month without succumbing to old habits or temptations, you’re likely well on your way to maintaining sobriety. It’s not easy, but if you can get through these early days and weeks with the right attitude and help from others, then everything else will be much easier. So let’s look at just some of the exciting things you have to look forward to in your first 30-days of sobriety.
You’ll feel more alive.
You’ll feel more in the moment, more aware of your surroundings and your body, and more in tune with your emotions.
You may have been foggy or distracted before you stopped drinking or using other addictive substances, but now that you’re sober, it will be easier to focus on what’s happening around you. You might notice new things about old friends or see familiar places in a new light after abstaining for a few weeks. You might find yourself paying closer attention to music or movies because everything seems so crisp and clear without drugs or alcohol muddying up your senses.
You will have more flexibility in your life.
The first 30 days of sobriety are exciting because you will likely feel more flexible in your life. For example, you may have noticed that you were so focused on drinking or using drugs that you didn’t have much time for anything else. Well, now that you’re sober, you can finally start spending quality time with family and friends and giving them your full attention.
You can also dedicate yourself to pursuing creative passions or the hobbies that used to get pushed aside when the need for an unhealthy escape took over. But don’t worry — this isn’t just a phase; after a year sober and beyond, these benefits will continue if they’re mutually beneficial or align with overall goals.
You’ll also notice that some things are no longer as important as they once were, such as particular friends you may have outgrown or changed interests.
Your creativity will flourish.
One of the great things about being sober is that your creativity will flourish. You’ll have more time and energy to pursue creative interests, which can positively affect your mental health.
After 30 days of sobriety, you might find that your confidence in your creative abilities increases dramatically. You may even feel like you’re experiencing a renewed zest for life as you start thinking about everything you want to create with this newfound sense of self-worth.
Your relationships will be better.
- You’ll have more time to spend with your friends. When you’re sober, you’ll have more energy and be less prone to anxiety and depression. This means that you’ll be able to engage in the activities that are important to you.
- You will give more of yourself when you’re present in a conversation or hanging out with someone rather than being distracted by booze or drugs. Alcohol can make people anxious while drinking it, leading them to say things they don’t mean or act inappropriately because they’re paranoid about how everyone sees them. Drugs make everything seem unimportant, so intoxicated people often avoid situations where they’d need their wits about them.
- A sober person is usually better at listening than someone under the influence; this might seem obvious, but it’s super important if one wants healthy relationships. Listening well helps build trust between two parties—but only if both parties can do it.
You won’t get so distracted.
One of the most common things people say when they’re newly sober is, “I’m so much more focused.” It’s true—the first month or two of your sobriety will be a time when you’ll be able to focus on what needs to get done instead of worrying about all the things that distract you from doing them.
This is great because it means all those projects and tasks you’ve been putting off can finally be done! Whether working on a creative project, catching up on work assignments, studying for an exam, or just cleaning your house from top to bottom, having increased clarity and energy will help ensure everything gets finished.
You can meet new people.
One of the biggest things you can look forward to is getting to know people.
When we’re sober, we tend to be more open and confident than when we are drinking, making it easier for others who are also sober (or even those who aren’t) to approach us. At first, this might feel awkward or overwhelming, but take it from me: these new relationships will enrich your life in ways you never thought possible.
You’ll become more active.
- Exercise releases endorphins, which act as your body’s natural feel-good chemicals.
- You’ll have more energy and less stress.
- Working out can help you sleep better, so you won’t wake up feeling tired and unrefreshed in the morning.
- Regular exercise can also help with weight loss because it burns fat—and if you’re trying to lose weight, then this is a great way to do it!
You’ll want to eat healthier foods.
If you’re reading this, chances are that the first thing on your mind is the fact that you have to abstain from drugs or alcohol for 30 days. While it can seem like an ordeal, being sober is a natural part of life and has many rewarding factors.
For example, your cravings for unhealthy foods will lessen as your body begins detoxifying itself from all the toxins and chemicals in drugs and alcohol.
You may also find that after a few weeks without drinking or using drugs, others around you will notice how great it feels when they see how healthy their friend is because they quit drinking or using drugs, and this might inspire them as well! Setting an example for your loved ones is a wonderful way to help encourage them to make necessary changes in their lives.
You’ll feel more in touch.
There are many things to look forward to in your first 30 days sober. One thing that I found especially great was becoming more in touch with my feelings, body, and surroundings. As I got used to being sober, I noticed the sun shining on my face or how good it felt to wake up with the rising sun and work out first thing in the morning. This made me feel more connected with the world around me rather than just going through the motions or being distracted by unnecessary thoughts.
I also became aware of my actions and interactions with others daily. I was able to be more empathetic to the feelings and needs of other people.
Intimacy will be better.
Your ability to be more aware and conscientious of the needs and desires of your partner will improve. Many people report that intimacy at the beginning of sobriety can feel a little awkward so take your time in getting comfortable with your body. You will soon develop more confidence which will be radiant from the inside out. One thing that can be helpful is talking to close friends or your therapist about your fears and insecurities so you can grow from them.
Once you feel confident in yourself, you will be shocked at how much better intimacy is because you are no longer numbing yourself with toxic substances. You will most likely be more cautious when entering or engaging in romantic relationships. You will be more mindful of your choices and consequences and use much better judgment. It’s likely, too, that your standards will raise for what you are and are not willing to settle for in any relationship.
Instead of feeling deprived, find out what you have to look forward to when you stay sober for 30 days or longer
You will experience many positive feelings, including:
- More energy
- Increased productivity
- Greater flexibility in your life
- An increase in creativity and mental clarity (not to mention the ability to stay on task)
The most significant benefit of staying sober for 30 days is that it helps create new habits.
Remember, it’s not about deprivation. You don’t have to feel like you’re missing out on anything because your life is still full of all the things that matter most to you.