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The Importance of Self-Care in Recovery


What does “self-care” mean to you?

For many people, it means time at the salon, a massage, a great meal out, or that longed-for vacation.

Most people define self-care as “doing something nice for yourself that helps break up the stress and make you feel good for a while.”

Some people cry “Self-care! I deserve it!” while throwing money around they don’t have on things they don’t need. Shopping, an expensive meal, or some other “treat” becomes a way to forget their stress for a brief moment.

But when they’re done, the same situation is still there–and with that money gone, the stress level skyrockets.

It’s fake self-care.

Substance Abuse is Fake Self-Care, Too

Why did you start drinking or taking drugs?

90 percent of our residents here at Spring Gardens Recovery have trauma in their past. The odds are that emotional and/or physical pain is involved:

To quiet voices in your head that carry the awful messages that you heard growing up.

To forget terrible memories that won’t go away.

Or to escape from yourself for a while and feel good.

Maybe it’s because you were promised that the prescription would help you control the pain, only it doesn’t. The medical field is only starting to realize (far too late) that they violated their main tenet: “First, do no harm.”

For many of us, alcohol or drugs have been our “self-care” — letting us forget what we really feel for a while — anger, depression, anxiety, self-loathing, pain, nothing.

But most of all, when all of this is trauma-related, drugs and alcohol let us forget we’re stuck in our grief and don’t know how to get out.

At Spring Gardens Recovery, We Believe The Answer is Real Self-Care

As you can see from our home page, Spring Gardens Recovery offers services like massages, organic foods, yoga, and a peaceful environment.

We’re not pretending we’re an all-inclusive resort, hiding the fact that there is hard work ahead. The truth is, these services hold an important place in your recovery:

  • You’ve spent a long time engaging in behaviors that harm you. You need to practice learning how to be good to yourself. Recovery isn’t about self-punishment. It’s about becoming healthy — your mind frame is a huge part of that.
  • The body and the mind are connected. Positions, pressure points, etc., can release memories and experiences and make them easier to talk about. They can calm an overactive mind and replace stress with peace and serenity.
  • Yoga, organic food therapy, and massage are just a few of the services we offer that actively help your body to detox. 

When it comes to self-care, we have a long-term vision, too.

Learning to be nice to yourself is one thing. Learning to succeed is self-care, too. That’s why we incorporate Life Skills Training into our intensive therapy program.

  • You’ll learn to prepare nutritious meals that will nurture your body and reduce your cravings.
  • We’ll work with you on your finances and teach you how to manage them.
  • If you need to, we’ll explore new career and life goals and help you figure out the path to get you there.
  • You’ll learn new tools for being aware of what you are feeling and for managing your stress, so you can have greater control over your life and your relationships.
  • You’ll develop better ways to communicate what you’re feeling so that your relationships can grow stronger.

As Brianna West writes, “True self-care is not salt baths and chocolate cake, it is making the choice to build a life you don’t need to regularly escape from.”

Real Recovery Self-Care is Doing the Work

In order to recover, there’s a lot of hard work to do:

  • Together, we’ll create an individualized program that will address your physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual needs.
  • You’ll be in intensive individual and group therapy where we’ll look at the journey that brought you here–addressing your history, your trauma, and your grief.
  • We’ll also identify the situations that could trigger a relapse and together, we’ll set you up for success.
  • You’ll be eating, exercising, and contemplating — becoming physically, mentally, and spiritually healthy.

But you’re the one doing most of the work — learning to care for yourself and learning to build a different life.

True self-care.

At Spring Gardens Recovery, we’ll help you find the tools you need to build that life.

Give us a call at (866) 244-9556.

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8213 Cessna Drive Spring Hill FL 34606
2902 West Columbus Drive Tampa FL 33607