• Henk Nagel

The Benefits Of A Sober House

Updated: Jul 27

Leaving rehab can be both exciting and unsettling. Now you’re sober there are so many possibilities, but in the early days there are also plenty of pitfalls. It’s a tricky time. A sober house can be a great way to help you grow through this challenging period, rather than slipping back into old ways.


So what are the benefits of spending time in a sober living facility after primary care?


Boost Your Chances of Long Term Recovery


Rehab helps you get sober and take the first steps in recovery. But it can be a bubble. The transition from that safe, protective space to the real world trips up many people. The first 90 days after leaving treatment are critical. It can be a shock, particularly if you immediately return to the same place where you were using. Triggers are rife, and your brain has not yet had time to fully embed those new habits and ways of responding. Spending time in a sober house helps you navigate those challenges from a safe, supportive base. It gives you time to adjust to those real life, to grow and practice new coping skills. Research indicates that sober living facilities substantially increase your chances of maintaining recovery.

There is a big difference between getting sober and living sober. A sober house can help you bridge that gap.


Social Support

The opposite of addiction is connection. Returning to your old environment and immediately trying to slot back into relationships with people who haven’t changed like you have can be overwhelming and lonely. Social support is crucial in recovery. In a sober house you are surrounded by like-minded people who understand what you’ve been through. You can feel at home in a nurturing community who support and encourage each other. Walking the road of recovery with others is a special experience. You feel safe to share things you have never shared before. You can meet unique people from all walks of life and form bonds that last a lifetime.

You will be supported by staff who have been where you are. Staff who don’t just help you, but relate deeply to the challenges you are experiencing. In a sober house the people around you understand what it’s like to crash one’s life and relationships and to begin rebuilding them. They understand the fear and loneliness of that dark place, and they also understand how to climb out of it and build a life worth living.


Chiang Mai has a vibrant recovery community where you can experiment with different support groups, including AA, NA, SMART Recovery and Buddhist recovery groups. You can meet amazing people, build a new support network, and feel at home in a place where everyone is pulling together.


Accountability

Despite our best intentions, it can be easy to slip back into old behaviours, especially in early recovery. Having the accountability of 24 hour staff and peer support can help you to keep making the right choices. Being accountable to others can be critical in helping you overcome those first hurdles and making honesty and reliability your lifestyle. But over time the driving force becomes accountability not to others, but to yourself. You learn to trust yourself and hold yourself accountable, building confidence to move on and live the life you want to live.


Structure & Independence


While rehab is all about structure, a sober living facility offers a healthy balance of structure and independence. You have the freedom to go out alone, to confront new and exciting experiences, then return to a supportive environment where you can process whatever challenges come up. As you venture out around town you will be exposed to triggers, and you will learn to handle them with the support of staff and peers.


The structure of a sober living facility helps you to maintain a stable routine, including a regular sleep pattern, exercise, meetings and healthy eating. This is something that often slips when people leave primary care with no ongoing support, and can be the first step towards relapse. The structure provided by a sober house helps engrain these new healthy habits, building a strong foundation that you can maintain independently when you move on.


Deeper / Further Work

In rehab you work primarily on your addiction. But addiction is often just a symptom, a misguided attempt to cope with other underlying issues. In primary care you may only scratch the surface.


But with some clean time under your belt, you have the stability to look deeper and to start making profound changes in the way you see yourself and the world.


In weekly one-to-one therapy sessions with our experienced counsellors, you can unpack things in depth and experiment with new ways of thinking and being. The supportive base of a sober house is an ideal place to do this.


You will also develop a range of strategies for coping and for personal growth through our CBT, DBT and mindfulness groups.


Sober Identity

In the all-consuming chaos of addiction, it’s easy to lose track of who you really are. In early recovery, many people confront daunting existential questions. Who am I? What’s my purpose? What sort of life do I want to live? It’s a place of possibility. It can be exciting. But it can be daunting too, and spending time in a sober house can give you space to explore these questions and establish what you want your life to look like in recovery.


You can bounce ideas off peers and experienced staff. In weekly sessions with our Recovery Coach you can ponder possibilities.


Chiangmai offers a plethora of activities to try, from jungle hikes to Muay Thai boxing, from meditation retreats to elephant sanctuaries. You can find new passions.


For many people, recovery is a turning point and they begin to explore new careers. But when you’re going it alone in early recovery and trying to keep your head above water, it can be difficult to find the mental space and confidence to jump into the unknown. A sober house provides you with a stable base from which you can take the first steps into something entirely new. At Embrace Sober House clients can do courses to train as teachers of meditation, yoga or English.


Sobriety is about so much more than just staying sober. It’s about building a life rich in meaning and excitement. A life that just doesn’t have room for alcohol and drugs.


Physical Health

Healthy body, healthy mind. The two are inextricably linked. But maintaining an exercise routine can be challenging in the early days of recovery, especially if you’re sailing solo. Being part of a sober living programme gives you the structure and support to rebuild your physical health and fitness, and to have fun doing it. Group activities like badminton, football, biking and hiking can bring both health and connection. Or if you want to really challenge yourself, having the support of an onsite personal trainer can help you push your limits in a safe and healthy way.


If you think spending time in a friendly, supportive sober house would be a valuable step in your recovery journey, contact us at +66 613013000 via telephone or WhatsApp.

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