Those who have graduated from the programs at Hawaii Island Recovery’s Hawaii sober living and recovery center have expressed the dedication it takes to manage the use of addictive substances and the urges, cravings, and other challenges that come with sobriety. However, addressing mental health needs is also paramount to a person’s continued recovery. Anxiety, depression, and more are all common, with social anxiety being a particular challenge for those in recovery continuing to further their sober goals outside of a dedicated treatment facility. For alumni, managing social anxiety is crucial for sustaining social support in recovery, and therefore needs to be addressed through long-term sobriety.

The Challenges of Social Anxiety for Alumni

Social anxiety is a common anxiety disorder for those overcoming addiction. While it is common to be a bit nervous in certain social situations – such as meeting new people, talking in front of a group, and more – those with social anxiety may experience intense feelings of dread, fear, or nervousness in a much wider array of social situations, including even just meeting up with established friends in a public place. 

These intense feelings can be wholly debilitating and lead to several challenges for those looking to engage in any kind of social situation. For some, feelings of anxiety, stress, fear, and even panic can be common, affecting how a person approaches these situations. Others may feel that they are constantly under a microscope while in any kind of social situation, with fears of being judged or watched being difficult to escape from. 

Those in recovery who experience social anxiety can also find feelings of isolation to be incredibly prominent. Not only might an individual feel isolated due to their history with addiction but those with social anxiety may have difficulty challenging these feelings of isolation or may otherwise mentally resign themselves to a life of feeling alone or detached from people as they fear engaging in otherwise beneficial social outlets. 

Some people may have turned to the use of drugs or alcohol to address these intense feelings of fear in social situations in the first place, feeling as if the use of drugs or alcohol is necessary to quell these feelings or to be able to engage in social situations at all. However, this relationship can quickly develop into a dangerous level of substance use or addiction. Alumni who have navigated the challenges of recovery but are still struggling to address social anxiety can find that these social situations and the stresses therein can be a major factor in slips or relapse throughout recovery. 

Does My Social Anxiety Disorder Affect My Sobriety?
Does My Social Anxiety Disorder Affect My Sobriety?

Social anxiety disorder and substance use can be closely intertwined. Learn how our rehab in Hawaii can help you by calling us today at (866) 390-5070.

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Strategies for Managing Social Anxiety in Recovery

Managing social anxiety is difficult, but there are always options available. Working with peers and professionals at Hawaii Island Recovery can empower each alumnus to find the strategies for managing social anxiety that work best for them and their continued sobriety. 

Start Small

Those with social anxiety can have difficulty not just attending social functions but also developing effective communication skills, even with known supports and loved ones. Starting with small groups or one-on-one interactions with supports and peers can be instrumental in having an opportunity to practice social skills and voicing needs, concerns, and more while feeling safe in a comfortable environment. 

Managing social anxiety is complicated, but taking it one step at a time and beginning in familiar and comfortable spaces can empower those in recovery to begin tending to social needs while still addressing urges, cravings, and stress, all while building confidence and new social skills.

Explore Sober Social Options

Addressing both the continued effects of addiction and social anxiety simultaneously is exhausting. Rather, alumni of Hawaii Island Recovery can instead engage in dedicated sober outlets, ensuring that even if they are challenged by social anxiety, drugs, and alcohol will not be present and risk a person’s hard-earned sobriety. 

From the community established at Hawaii Island Recovery to exploring other local options through sober support groups or activity groups where addictive substances are not present can empower those in recovery to engage in a social situation and focus on social skills without having to navigate unnecessary high-risk situations. 

Navigating anxiety in civilian life
Navigating Anxiety in Civilian Life

Navigating anxiety for veterans can be complicated and difficult. Learn how our treatment centers in Hawaii can help you by calling us today at (866) 390-5070.

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Set Realistic Goals and Expectations for Managing Social Anxiety

Challenging social anxiety and addiction doesn’t mean that an individual necessarily has to become a social butterfly, and many in recovery may still prefer a cozy night in rather than going out with people on many occasions. Setting goals for managing social anxiety and appropriate expectations can empower each alumnus to continue to tend to social needs with a healthy mindset. 

Goals to attend sober social functions once a week, or agreeing to attend a social function but only planning to attend for part of the time, can be a great way for those in recovery to engage in social activities while also setting realistic expectations of themselves. Setting overly grandiose goals can set an individual up for failure, or otherwise cause them to unfairly judge themselves or their progress.

Managing social anxiety is difficult. Yet, the professionals at Hawaii Island Recovery, as well as the peers met throughout recovery and as an alumnus, can help each individual tend to social needs in a sober setting, all while developing new strategies for overcoming debilitating feelings of fear in social situations.

Navigating the challenges of addiction and the complexities of recovery at our Hawaii sober living and recovery center may still have goals to achieve, and managing the effects of social anxiety and tending to social needs is just one of how alumni may continue their healing journey. At Hawaii Island Recovery, we understand the unique and personal journey of addiction recovery and the unique stresses that may affect each individual, from depression and trauma to anxiety disorders like social anxiety. We personalize each program to help you address your unique needs, with our professionals and peers alike ready to help you understand and overcome the effects of social anxiety today. To learn more, call us at (866) 390-5070.