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8 Life Skills for Adults in Recovery

Many individuals who suffer from addiction face consequences in other areas of their life where they have unhealthy or inconsistent life skills. An important part of recovery is learning new life skills for adults in recovery so they can transition better back into life and create a new healthy normal without having to rely on substances. Returning to life after treatment can be difficult. It is important to be aware of the challenges ahead and work to develop the skills to overcome them.

Life Skills for Adults in Recovery


A common reason individuals relapse after treatment relates to the emotional concerns they face as they return to “normal life”. This can be greatly impacted by poor attention to self-care. During treatment, individuals learn to value self-care practices. Some of those practices include enforcing boundaries, and having a plan that caters to each aspect of their health and well-being.

Self-care can be very individual and include the things that help you relax and feel connected to yourself. In recovery, we are reminded of the importance of taking the time to nourish ourselves. This is so we have the energy and ability to go after the things that bring us a sense of calm, happiness and joy.

Coping Skills

There are several different coping skills you can learn to help with your recovery such as setting healthy boundaries with friends and families, gaining more tools and skills to help with safety planning around triggers, and coping ahead with the challenges that are expected to arise in any given day.

In addition, learning your HALT symptoms (Hungry, angry, lonely, tired) and how to move through these with compassion and care also represents an important part of the life skills needed to successfully transition through each stage of recovery.

Emotional Regulation

Emotional regulation will help you to stay present, grounded, and self-aware. For many, alcohol and drugs have been used as a form of emotional regulation and without them, one may feel raw and vulnerable. Learning to gain control over the parasympathetic nervous system by employing different breathing techniques, journaling out your feelings, and reframing your thoughts using cognitive behavioral strategies will help you gain more access to your emotions healthily, so they don’t become overwhelming.

Healthy Routines

Planning and managing your time is an important life skill. Creating healthy routines for yourself will greatly aid in your recovery journey. In the beginning, forming a healthy routine can take some time but with practice and dedication, it will become a habit. In addition, part of recovery is finding employment, managing a daily schedule and taking care of one’s personal hygiene and finances —all skills that are benefited by the creation of a consistent daily routine.

Nutrition and Exercise

Learning how to plan meals, grocery shop and cook are also important life skills. Ensuring you have food in your diet that nourishes you and makes it possible for your body to function is important.

On the same note, physical activity can play an important role in recovery. Taking care of your body is an essential life skill that will keep you moving through your recovery journey.

Building Healthy Relationships

Learning how to form healthy relationships is equally important and one of the more challenging life skills in recovery to strive towards and maintain. Communicating with family members and friends clearly and honestly, gaining new friends, and starting new romantic relationships are all areas that may need to be reevaluated with your recovery goals in mind.

Taking The Time to Set Achievable Goals

is an important life skill and if done correctly will aid you in achievement and success in all areas of life. Setting clear manageable goals will help build up motivation and confidence as you begin and move through your life.

Maintaining A Clean Living Space

Taking care of your household chores such as making your bed, doing the dishes, cleaning the bathroom etc. is good for your mental health. Knowing how to clean and keep this tidy is a life skill many people struggle with. When our house is dirty and there is clutter it increases stress and anxiety but when it is clean it has a positive effect on your health and well-being.

Sober Living in West LA

Attention to these life skills for adults are incredibly vital as you are working to build the framework of your life in a way that supports your recovery. With each life skill that you learn and employ, you are contributing to your long-term success. At Riviera Recovery, our sober living in West LA gives individuals the opportunity to put your life skills into practice and build up a strong foundation once you eventually return home. Give us a call today to learn more about Riviera Recovery.