Spring Cleaning Can Involve Your Friends, Too

By O'Connor Professional Group

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April showers bring May flowers, but spring cleaning isn’t done yet. You still have time to get a fresh start before summer. If you are in recovery from a mental health or behavioral health disorder, part of your recovery is evaluating your friendships and deciding who will contribute to your recovery and who will take away from it.

Recovery is a complete and total lifestyle transformation. One of the biggest fears people have about coming to recovery is having to say goodbye to treasured friendships. At first, seeing the toxicity of certain friendships is difficult to do. With treatment and therapy, it becomes easier to recognize the patterns which indicate a problematic friendship. Practice makes progress, as it is said in recovery, because recovery is about progress, not perfection. Throughout your recovery, you may need to reevaluate your friendships and let go of the ones which no longer serve you. Friends are loyal, supportive, and honest, as well as encouraging of your recovery. If one of these kinds of friendships are still in your life, talk with your therapist or therapeutic recovery companion about how to safely and respectfully detach with love.

Friends who take

Friendships are reciprocal, with a long term balance of give and take. A friend who does all the taking isn’t really a friend. Many people who struggle with behavioral or mental health issues also struggle with codependency issues. Unhealthy relationships serve a purpose. Giving, for example, can become an identity. Friends who exploit codependency, either consciously or unconsciously, are not the kind of friends to be keeping.

Friends who are drama

Drama is a theme that belongs on television or in the movies, not in a friendship. Finding the friends who are drama all the time is not hard. Ironically, they are typically the friends who say they “hate drama”, yet they are always involved in drama, of their own making or someone else’s. You have likely been through enough of your drama on your own living with a mental illness, especially if you have experienced trauma and are living with PTSD. Make drama something you watch, not someone you deal with.

Friends who don’t support sobriety

For many, the path to recovery starts as a result of addiction or alcoholism. Living a substance abuse lifestyle can include many friends. People often stay in the cycle of addiction because of their social circle. Friends in addiction can feel like the closest friends, even though they are perpetuating a dangerous and life threatening cycle. The right friends will support your sobriety, even if they continue to struggle with addiction themselves. Friends you need to let go of are the friends who don’t support your sobriety or encourage you to relapse.

After treatment, recovery does not stop. Case management, after care, therapeutic recovery companions, and executive coaching are just some of the concierge style services offered by O’Connor Professional Group. Everyone recovers differently. Allow our team to curate a custom plan of recovery for you so you can find the greatest success. Call us today for a consultation: 617.910.3940

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