4 Ways Doing Service Work Can Keep You Sober

4 Ways Doing Service Work Can Keep You Sober

Getting sober is a long tough path. Once you’ve gone through the physical and mental stress of detox the next part of recovery is staying sober. It’s a lifelong journey, but there are a few things you can do to help maintain your sobriety. Service work is one of those things. 

Service work is any type of volunteer work that puts you in service of others. The 12-Step programs recommend service work and a myriad of opportunities are available, ranging from small meeting commitments like setting up chairs and making coffee to General Service commitments like Area Delegate and Grapevine Representative.

 Benefits of Doing Service Work:

  1. It’s a fulfilling way to make some amends: The hard truth is that while you were on your path of addiction odds are you did some damage to those around you. Whether it be, family, friends or your community. Doing volunteer work can help to alleviate some of the guilt and regret you may have towards your past. It’s a way to make a positive impact.
  2. Service work builds bonds: A very important part of recovery is building bonds with people that are sober. It provides you with friends that won’t be influencing you to use. These types of bonds also give you people to surround yourself with on days when you are struggling. People that can help ease your pain and take your mind off of your addiction.
  3. It provides a commitment to your 12 step program: It can become easy to say I am okay today, I don’t need a meeting. That thinking early on can lead to a downward spiral heading straight back to addiction. Making a commitment to your program as small as making coffee, bringing snacks, or even just unlocking the door for everyone else can be the tiny step you need to keep you going back. 
  4. Having an outlet will keep your mind in the right frame: Have you ever heard the term “ an idle mind is the devil’s playground”? It’s true. It’s easy to get thoughts stuck inside your head. When you are idle those thoughts can and will take over. The best way to avoid that happening is to stay busy. Doing service will keep you busy. 

As you can see there are 4 great ways service work can keep you sober. It provides fulfillment, builds bonds, creates commitment and gives you an outlet. If you’re in a program ask your sponsor about opportunities. Not in a program, that’s okay run a quick google search for opportunities. Don’t be afraid to do what you need to so you can maintain sobriety, and for more information, please call us at 833-801-LIVE today.


Woman Uses Instagram to Teach Others of Her Boyfriend’s Addiction Recovery Journey

Woman Uses Instagram to Teach Others of Her Boyfriend’s Addiction Recovery Journey

Instagram is a social networking tool where you can post pictures and videos of yourself and your friends as well as including filters to them to give them a sense of style. Instagram can also be a good way to document a person’s journey such as trying to lose weight or even trying to recover from addiction. A woman from Nottingham decided to use Instagram as a tool to document her boyfriend’s heroin addiction to teach followers how bad it can get and to encourage others to go into treatment.

Using Instagram to Stay Sober

Recovery.org did a study to show how Instagram can help those struggling with addiction to help recover. Hashtags like #sober, #soberlife, and #12steps have been used in over 79,000 posts. #Soberlife was the most common addiction recovery hashtag with 32,707 mentions followed by #sobriety which has 19,033 mentions. Recovery programs like #narcoticsanonymous had 1,638 mentions and #alcoholicsanonymous had 1,272 mentions. The study also showed that Utah had the most addiction recovery posts 144.4 posts per capita and California had 70.8. Ironically, Utah has one of the lowest national rates of illicit substance abuse with California having high levels. This shows that substance abuse must be fairly new in Utah and more people are interested in learning about it. 

Instagram has the power to let users stay anonymous compared to Facebook where you are told to put in your personal information in your profile. Instagram helps give people space where they can share their experiences of addiction without having to worry about coworkers or family members knowing about it. While unfortunately there are websites that can trigger a person’s addiction, there are also others that encourage others to seek treatment.

Instagram Addiction Recovery Accounts

One Instagram account is called “Sober Quotes” that posts life lessons and motivational advice to get through the hard days of keeping sober. “Let’s Help Broken Ones” focuses on promoting self-love and passing it on to others. Users can also ask questions or messages in 300 characters for account creators to answer. “12 Steps to Recovery” provides messages of hope and messages of healing through the 12 steps. “Recovery Daily” provides encouragement through faith in a Higher Power. This is good for those who incorporate their religious beliefs into their recovery.

A Relationship Starting with Addiction

Lisa Selby met her boyfriend, Elliot Murawski, in 2015 at Alcoholics Anonymous. While they quickly fell in love with each other, Murawski relapsed and was sent to jail for two years and eight months after he was caught drug dealing to support his habit. Elliot first tried drugs when he was 12 and moved onto illegal substances when he was 15. After keeping his relapse a secret from Selby for three months, he finally confessed to her about it. This inspired Selby to create the Instagram account, @bluebaglife, to better understand her boyfriend’s addiction. The account was named after the little blue bag that Murawski would keep his drugs in. This account now has 11.5 thousand followers. 

Creating An Honest Addiction Recovery Instagram Account 

Selby started to take photos and videos of Murawski to better understand her boyfriend’s addiction in the hope it would help him detox. She would also show Murawski the pictures that she took of him when he was high to help each other understand what it was doing to both of them. She would take pictures of him looking high, pictures of the needles and other supplies used for drug supply, and even a picture of himself staring at a needle filled with heroin. Murawski would help Selby out with her Instagram account by sending letters and captions for her to use despite having no access to social media. 

There would be honest posts of Murawski suggesting to Selby that they should do drugs together and her refusing. She also posted a caption where she explains how she would see syringe packets surrounding her as she ate breakfast. He would hide his drug habits in his car and then in the bathroom. He then began using drugs in front of her. Selby was then able to learn from him where he acquired drugs and how it was done. Because she lost her mother to heroin use, Selby wanted to learn through her boyfriend about what made her lose her mom.

Instagram Account Reactions

This couple was amazed to see how many followers they were getting and how much they were supporting Murawski to overcome his drug use. In order to prevent people from being triggered by the photos and videos that were posted, the account was created as private. Selby said that she is proud of the network that she created through this account and hopes to help others suffering from addiction. Making accounts like these will encourage others to be honest about their addiction. By seeing the worst of drug addiction through these photos and videos, this will make others feel incredible joy when that person reaches recovery. 

Elliot Murawski’s Recovery

Murawski has been clean for two years and believes that Instagram is the reason why he reached recovery. Now, Selby is using Instagram to help others tell their stories of addiction. Breaking the stigma on popular social media platforms can make a difference. These Instagram accounts will show the honest brutality that addiction can inflict on someone and can encourage others that there is always time to better your life.

Located on the shore of Southern New Jersey, Enlightened Solutions is a recovery center using evidence-based therapies and holistic healing to treat addiction and mental illness. With the opportunity to learn about therapies that are keyed in to healing the human spirit and learning about new stress-reducing techniques centered around a 12 step network, you will ensure a lasting recovery. For more information, please call us at 833-801-LIVE as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.