8 Essential Life Skills for Adults in Recovery

Sober living homes provide individuals in recovery with countless learning experiences and opportunities to develop important life skills that will make the transition back into society much easier.


Although the recovery process is extremely personal and can occur in many different ways, a transitional living programme such as The Bridge Foundation will provide recovery life skills and time to practice new healthy habits before re-entering society as an independent, sober individual. Here are eight of the main life skills residents of The Bridge Foundation sober living house will learn and practice during their time here.


1. Self-Care

A common denominator of emotional relapse is poor self-care. A high-quality transitional housing programme will help clients recognise the importance of self-care as well as what it looks like on a daily basis. Residents should learn and practice the basics of self-care practices within the boundaries of their sober living programme. This includes getting adequate sleep, eating nutritious foods, and using coping strategies to combat depression, anxiety, and other negative emotions and thoughts.



2. Cooking meals

Just as making healthy food choices is important, individuals in recovery also need to learn how to create a meal plan, shop for groceries, and prepare their own meals. The Bridge sober living houses require that residents prepare their own meals, which gives them time to practice this skill and develop a system that works best for them. Living with other people in recovery also provides an opportunity to make a meal plan, shop, and cook with a friend instead of facing it all on your own for the first time.



3. Setting and achieving personal goals

One of the top life skills in recovery should also include making goals. Years of continued substance abuse may have left some people feeling hopeless, without any life goals or aspirations. Goals keep life moving forward and prevent old habits from seeping back in. Others may have never had goals in the first place. Fortunately, recovery is the perfect time to start defining and pursuing personal goals. Some examples of positive goals might be:

  • Going for a run three times a week.

  • Opening a savings account.

  • Volunteering for a community organization.

  • Submitting three job applications each week until employment is secured.

Whatever a person’s goals are in recovery, they should be rewarding and keep them away from drug and alcohol use.



4. Maintaining a clean living space

Learning how to maintain a clean living space is not just good practice in discipline, but it will also make returning home a whole lot easier, especially for those who have family members. Living with other individuals (whether in a sober living home or in a more traditional home environment) presents its own challenges and obstacles. As individuals in recovery learn to keep their living environment clean and tidy, they also learn the importance of respecting others and considering others’ wants and needs when making decisions.



5. Managing finances

Another primary recovery life skill is managing finances. Financial planning and management may be difficult for a person in recovery, as they may be used to allocating all their money to acquiring drugs and/or alcohol. The time spent in a sober living house will give residents the opportunity to practice budgeting, saving, and planning for these expenses.



6. Building healthy relationships

Building healthy relationships is one of the most important and challenging new life skills for addicts in recovery. While the person in recovery is adjusting to their new life of sobriety, their family and friends will also be adjusting to the change. Regardless of how family and friends respond to an individual’s newfound sobriety, it is vital that people in recovery focus on the following things:

  • Communicating clearly

  • Expressing emotions in a healthy way

  • Listening

  • Identifying and coping with triggers in social situations

These skills can be gained by interacting with other residents in a sober living home, by attending outpatient support groups, and by building new relationships with other individuals in recovery.



7. Managing time

In the past, people who were addicted most likely spent the majority of their time and energy using or obtaining drugs and/or alcohol. In recovery, these individuals must learn to fill their time with goals, activities, and recovery-oriented work. One of the best ways to practice time management while in a sober living programme is to invest in a daily planner. Using a planner to schedule out free time is a great way to avoid boredom and wasted time, which put a person at higher risk for relapse.



8. Finding and maintaining employment

Maintaining a good job is one of the many things that makes life more meaningful, especially for those in recovery. The Bridge Foundation's transitional housing programme provides a support to help people in recovery find and obtain employment. We will help individuals to search for employment using various methods, fill out applications, create or update a resume, and how to properly present themselves in a job interview.



Gain Life Skills in Recovery with The Bridge Foundation

After rehab or an intense detox programme, many individuals may still need support as they begin the transition back into society. Sober living programmes can provide a number of resources and life skills for substance abusers in recovery to help residents successfully become a contributing member of society.


Our residents are referred to our facilities from the Cayman Islands Conditional Release Board, Probation, Drug Court, Caribbean Haven or the Counseling Centre. If you or a loved one has recently completed a drug and alcohol rehab programme and are looking for a reputable sober living program, please contact The Bridge Foundation today. One of our admissions coordinators will be happy to walk you through our programme options and help you find the location and services that best fit your recovery needs.

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