Feeling stuck in a daily routine is common. For a man in recovery from sexual addiction, a new routine is a helpful tool, essential in early recovery as new patterns are being formed. Changes and new steps will prevent him from becoming stuck and will challenge old patterns of thinking as a new way of life begins to take hold. There are simple steps that a man can practice each day to make sure his recovery doesn’t become stuck or stagnant, continuing to increase for years to come.
- Do one thing differently from the normal routine.
This can actually seem too simple to actually work, but changing one aspect of a man’s daily life will actually encourage him that change is possible. Some ideas are to wake up earlier, go to bed earlier, or eat healthier. He can drive a different way to work. A small change will help disrupt the routine.
- Begin the day with Scripture.
He can start with verses like, “This is the day the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24), or “Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning” (Lamentations 3:23). Reading the Bible reminds a man that each day is a new opportunity to have a different life, a life focused on God’s plan and purpose.
- Start the process of addressing what’s been put off.
Maybe he’s been putting off cleaning out the garage. Seems like such a huge task that it can’t possibly get done in one day. If he accepts the fact that it may take multiple days, then he can start the process today, and continue to see results daily until he finishes it. This is a huge blow to procrastination and will help him feel accomplished. Set the goal of completing the task and begin working towards the finish line
- Take a day off from a bad habit.
It could be not smoking for a day, not eating fast food, or reducing the time spent online. Disrupting the unhealthy routine will give space for something new to replace it. As he takes more and more days off from a bad habit throughout the week, and begins new, better habits, the old, bad habits will be forgotten.
- Make an appointment with a counselor or life coach.
Addressing the issue of feeling stuck in his recovery and what factors are keeping him there are vital to the work of recovery. A professional can help determine areas he needs to focus on or areas that are yet to be addressed.
- Connect with a friend or loved one.
It might be he hasn’t talked with them in a while. Life can get so busy that he may begin to isolate from those he loves the most. Or, he becomes so consumed by a recovery mentality that he forgets his friends and family that aren’t involved in the recovery world. Maybe there are amends that need to be made. Investing in relationships is essential in recovery.
There are countless distractions in daily life that keep someone trapped in the same patterns. A man needs to think about what it is that he keeps putting on the back burner and focus on a specific goal. It could be working on the 12 Steps seriously, connecting with a sponsor, or finishing a book about recovery. Creating and focusing on goals are important in creating a new rhythm.
- Be kind to himself.
On an airplane, passengers are told that in the case of emergency, they should secure their own oxygen mask before assisting others. It’s the same way in recovery. When a man takes care of himself, he is then able to care for others. When he feels stuck, chances are he’s not practicing self-care and being too critical with where he is in the process. Working recovery is self-care.
- Say out loud what he’s thinking in his head.
By doing this, he can dispute any lies he’s been believing with the truth of God’s Word. Hearing the thoughts spoken verbally will allow him to process them in a way that’s not clouded by everything else going on in his mind. Journaling can also help process what is inside. Sharing with others in recovery meetings or with a sponsor helps clarify thinking.
- Share his plan to get unstuck with someone to whom he will be accountable.
Accountability works best when it is focused on putting a positive plan in place, rather than simply keeping someone from messing up. An accountability partner can help a man practically walk out this new plan and provide the support he needs.
Getting unstuck on the recovery journey begins with the first step. Taking any of these steps will help a man reignite a sense of recovery and focus, which is crucial to becoming who God has called him to be. For additional help on the journey, call 800-NEW-LIFE.