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The Power of Meditation in Addiction Recovery


When you enter a drug and alcohol rehab program in San Diego, there is not a single method of treatment that you will follow. Instead, your treatment plan will consist of many different components from one-on-one and group therapy to exercise and nutrition counseling. Together these elements address the physical, mental, emotional, and social ramifications of addiction. Through a well-rounded approach, you can feel more confident in confronting and overcoming whatever challenges you encounter in recovery.

Meditation has become an integral part of the recovery process due to its vast benefits and the ease with which it can be implemented. It is fairly simple to learn and can be practiced virtually anywhere. Once you understand the basics, you can use meditation to support your long-term recovery and help cope with cravings, temptations, and the stress of everyday life. Another great thing about meditation is that there is no set time frame. You can meditate for a few minutes or an hour – whatever fits with your needs and schedule. It is also something that you can do once a day, or multiple times per day. Meditation has been practiced for centuries by people throughout the world.

Meditation Brings Clarity and Focus

You may have lot on your mind during recovery. You’re trying to apply what you learned in treatment, balance work and life, avoid triggers, and implement healthy routines. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Meditation can bring you back to the present and help you to clear your mind. Many people practice mindfulness meditation where they become more aware of their thoughts and feelings. When you recognize what you are feeling, rather than just a jumble of emotions, it can be easier to work through it. You can more clearly identify if you are angry, sad, anxious, frustrated, or scared.

You can also focus your mind on more positive thoughts and reduce stress. When you’re living in the here and now and not as anxious about the “what ifs” of the future, it can be calming. You take one day and one issue at a time, evaluating them with more rational thinking. Then you can respond in a more appropriate manner.

Meditation Increases Awareness

As you become more mindful, you become aware of the connection between your body and mind. When you start to become anxious or stressed, you recognize the subtle changes in your physical and mental health. Perhaps you can feel your heart rate start to quicken or your muscles begin to tense. Stepping back and meditating can allow you to keep these feelings in check. Through deep breathing and visualization, you can calm your nerves and resist the temptation to turn to drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism.

Meditation Boosts Moods

When you’re focusing on reducing negative thought patterns, it’s only natural that you will start to feel better. Being more aware of your feelings can help you make positive decisions that lead to better outcomes. If your surround yourself with people who bring up your mood and self-esteem instead of tearing you down, and you also focus on managing your own thoughts, it can make a noticeable difference. Whereas at one time you may have let little aggravations really bother you, now you’re able to push past them and look on the brighter side. You can take more pleasure in the simple things in life.

Meditation Can Help Curb Cravings and Temptation

The more aware you become of your thoughts and feelings, the better you can cope with them. You can recognize that you’re experiencing a craving but that you have the power not to give in to it. Within 15-30 minutes, it will pass. Shifting your thoughts to something different can make it easier to bear the highs and lows of cravings. It can also remind you of what you’re working toward and why you’re choosing to say no to drugs and alcohol.

Meditation can complement other forms of therapy. You can integrate it with yoga, qigong, or deep breathing exercises. During counseling you can discuss the thoughts and emotions you have been struggling with and work through them to reduce the risk of relapse. Meditation can help you to keep stress in check and find reprieve when you’re in a difficult situation. Instead of being reactive, you can become proactive.

If you’ve never tried meditation before, it’s worth a shot, even if it’s not something you pictured yourself doing. Keep an open mind and give it a chance. You never know what will happen.

Chapters Capistrano incorporates meditation, yoga, acupuncture, and other holistic therapies into its customized treatment programs. You can explore what works best for you in recovery and helps you to stay on track. These activities are combined with traditional and evidence-based therapies for a more comprehensive approach. Contact Chapters Capistrano at 949-371-4198 to learn more about the benefits of our flexible approach to treatment.