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Halfway Houses Vs. Sober Living Houses. What Is the Difference?

Aftercare is a very important aspect of drug use disorder treatment. The very first days or weeks are especially hard for patients who have just completed an inpatient detox program. Recovering addicts will experience multiple triggers and cravings, which will eventually lead to relapse. Most patients will take some time to get back into their lives. They usually choose to live in either living halfway houses or sober living houses. People often confuse the two because both are facilities used to help people ease from use disorder inpatient treatment to fully independent living. You should opt for either of these if you feel you need a little more time to stabilize before you can resume your healthy life. Halfway houses and sober living houses still have differences you need to consider before you select which facility you will spend your time in. 

What is a Halfway House?

woman in a yellow sweater sitting on a couch in a sober living home, sober living los angeles, couples sober living A halfway house is a residential facility that serves multiple groups of people who need rehab. Some are meant for people transitioning from prison life or jail other use for individuals who have a chronic mental illness, and others are house individuals aim towards sober living. In some cases, halfway houses are used to shelter the homeless. The Federal Government usually funds halfway, which eliminates all costs or maintains it at a low cost to the patients. There are public facilities and government agencies that operate them. The court orders most of the individuals to halfway houses. These residences normally offer a room and board facilities. There are a few of them that offer some therapeutic treatment and support, but in most cases, it is not available. However, they do offer group meetings that promote sober living and reinforce recovery.

The History of Halfway Houses

Halfway houses were introduced in the 18th century in England. Initially, they were meant to house and rehabilitate juveniles who had committed crimes. The United States adopted these residences to house individuals who had just left prison. Over time these houses have been used to shelter the homeless and, in recent times, two house individuals who have left an inpatient rehab facility.

What is a Sober Living House?

A sober living house is a residence owned by a private organization or individual for profit. Individuals sign up for a space in such residences voluntarily. These facilities vary from low cost and low amenity accommodations to luxurious accommodations. They are also available in diverse styles, for example, faith-based accommodations, 12-step accommodation, holistic residences, and more. The diversity makes it possible to offer a large number of people the appropriate help to transition from patient treatment to their healthy lifestyle. Sober living residences have strict rules and a zero-tolerance policy for substance possession and abuse. You do not necessarily have to start with an addiction treatment program before you join any sober living house. However, you will need to participate in their applications and weekly house meetings.

The Difference Between Sober Living and Halfway Houses

The right residence is necessary for practical sobriety skills. Differences between sober living and halfway houses will help you determine which residence is suitable for your sobriety skills and long-term recovery and abstinence. Some of the major differences include:
  1. A sober living house is usually run by an addiction treatment center or an individual. Halfway houses are funded by the government and operated by its agencies.
  2. Individuals go to sober living houses voluntarily. On the other hand, individuals will go to Halfway houses under Court orders.
  3. Halfway houses are built like dorms, while sober living houses are structured like private residences. As a result, sober living houses offer more privacy and comfort.
  4. These residences have a major cost difference. Halfway houses are cheaper because they get their funding from taxpayer’s money. However, the low price comes with fewer amenities. Sober living houses cost more, but insurance companies can help with the bill. The higher costs mean better services and facilities.

What Happens at a Sober Living Home?

Sober living houses host individuals suffering from various types of addictions, but behavioral addictions such as sexual compulsion or gambling are less common. Individuals who have a hard use disorder for the following substances have responded positively to a sober living environment—cocaine heroin alcohol methamphetamine. There are expectations and rules of living in a sober living home. two women having a conversation in a sober living house, sober living los angeles, couples sober living, sober living Sober living homes have staff members who are responsible for enforcing these rules to ensure that the environment is free of drugs and the individuals you are not tempted to relapse. As a resident in a Sober Living Home, you are expected to maintain sobriety, find work or go to job interviews, observe the curfew laws, complete the delegated choice in time and some facilities have mandatory 12 steps and recovery programs. You get to choose the period or the days to leave, but usually, the length of stay is between 3 to 12 months, which offers ample time to regain your security in terms of employment and sobriety. There are random drug tests in sober living Homes to ensure you the Residence is free of drugs. You can leave the sober living home after the agreed period, or you can leave freely if the court has not ordered you to be at the residence.

Halfway House Activities

  • Initiate your search for employment. You have access to a support system that schedules time for making applications and attending interviews.
  • Make living and housing arrangements. Some individuals will visit halfway houses and do not own a home. These residences present and time to look for housing. Others fear that their own homes may trigger a relapse. However, towards the end of your stay, you need to make housing arrangements and rules on how you will cope with Temptations and cravings.
  • Adjust to leading a sober life. You may be experiencing withdrawal symptoms and Temptations to relapse. The Residence has rules which will help you adjust two following these rules and leading a sober life.
  • Make amends. Actions of individuals who engage in substance use disorder affect those around them. You should try to reach out and make amends for your efforts. It is a liberating process that helps you rebuild your support network.

Riviera Sober Living – West Los Angeles Sober Living Homes

Riviera is a health and wellness community that sets its goals around wellness, independence, and community. We have a team of experienced local addiction consultants that help you to ease back into the community from a sober living facility. Our services focus on safety, empowerment, and support. We offer multiple services, including weekly mentor meetings, nutrition meetings, 24/7 rehab consulting staff, food management systems, random drug testing, weekly social activities, and more. Our organization offers two main facilities located in West Los Angeles. Palisades house is a coed residence, and the Barrington house only hosts male residents. You can choose between the two based on the convenience of the location and the type of patients admitted in the Residence. We have staff waiting ready to help you start your transition to living a healthy life today. 

Final Word

Sober living homes and halfway houses offer residences to help you back into your life and your community. Their main goal is similar, but they have significant differences, for example, most individuals go to Halfway houses under court order. In contrast, most individuals who visit sober living Homes go voluntarily. You will have access to addiction consultants who are ready to offer assistance at any time. Sober houses are usually more convenient and offer better amenities than halfway houses. Visit a halfway house If you wish to save on cost or are under court instructions. 
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An Important Tool: The Recovery Compass Workbook

In recovery, you are always working on improving yourself and your life. Sometimes it’s not easy, but it’s still worth it. Research shows that it takes about 20 to 30 days to establish a new physical or emotional habit. In recovery, you’re learning all the time. It can feel overwhelming at first to get your bearings as a newly sober person. That’s why we provide you with a Recovery Compass as a tool to help you along the way. The Recovery Compass workbook was created as a guide to help you navigate your way through early recovery. The book enables you to schedule your time, create and achieve goals, and learn more about living a healthy, satisfying life without the use of alcohol or drugs.

How the Recovery Compass Workbook Works

The Recovery Compass is a guidebook that helps you learn more about what to expect as you acclimate yourself to living in recovery and sober living. Your time at Riviera Recovery can help you grow, heal, and begin the work that will help you stay substance-free for life. How you spend that time is essential. You’ll have structure, meetings, and support throughout the journey. The Recovery Compass workbook is a tool that’s unique to our sober living program. A staff mentor will be your partner in this journey as you make your way through the exercises in your workbook. If you have questions, need motivation, or need to talk to somebody about your recovery, your staff mentor can help you. The workbook can help you focus, learn new life skills, and learn about what makes you happy and what you want to do with your life when you’ve graduated. You’re never “alone” when you’re in recovery, and you’re not limited to what you learn while using the book.

Living With Purpose

Living with purpose means finding inspiration, direction and working toward new goals. Goals can be short-term or long-term. Having these goals is a great thing! However, when you’re new to recovery, living life one day at a time is crucial. Short-term goals help you concentrate on what you want to get done every day. Longer-term goals help you look forward to the future and truly work toward what you want most in life. Your first goal should always be to maintain your recovery. Don’t drink or use drugs! Many of your daily tasks will revolve around this goal. Attending 12-step meetings, connecting with your sponsor, and meeting other commitments will help you build on your recovery. Other goals you create may be new or goals that got interrupted. Many people take time to pursue new career goals,  continue their education, and learn other new skills once they feel secure in their recovery.

Becoming a Better You in Recovery!

The workbook that you receive will also take you through some exploratory exercises. It’s hard to think of the future if you’re sitting around feeling inadequate. Recovery can lift you out of the guilt, shame, and pain of addiction. You’re taking action by staying sober and working on becoming a better person – a better YOU! – every day. You’ll learn how to plan your finances, work on relationships with family or friends, and become responsible for your actions in recovery. Doing groundwork like the exercises in the Compass Workbook will help you learn more about yourself and set a trajectory for your life after drugs and alcohol. Every day you stay sober is another day that you can take time to work on yourself. There’s no way that you can “fix” everything about yourself overnight. It’s okay to take some parts of your recovery in “baby steps.” Know what those steps are, and approaching them with the right attitude and a spirit of acceptance can help you achieve new things in your life. Not sure what your next step is? Ask your staff mentor or your sponsor for help.

Finding Happiness and Passions

Recovery is in no way limited to hard work, therapy, and meetings. When you’re feeling more stable in your recovery, you may find yourself antsy. Even with your scheduled recovery program, you’ll probably find you have a lot of time on your hands. How you use your time at Riviera Recovery is essential. There are some goals you must meet to continue to the next phase of the program and earn new privileges. Getting out and about, learning self-care and taking time to exercise are all ways you can enjoy your downtime. Clients of Riviera Recovery love to go to the gym, get some surfing time, and to participate in relaxation like yoga and meditation.  Exploring what makes you happy, learning new hobbies, and pursuing new interests along with your goals are hallmarks of living a healthy, substance-free life.

Structure and Time Management

  Time management is one new way to maintain focus in your life. When you were using substances, you probably had trouble sticking to a schedule. After all, cravings seem to have a plan of their own. There were perhaps days, weeks, or months lost to using your drug of choice. Addiction does this to people. You’re not alone in this. As a disease, addiction is powerful and insidious. It captures and hijacks your goals, causing you to deprioritize things that once were important. It generally makes it impossible to stick to things you’d promised yourself you’d get done. And there are few goals that you can achieve while you’re feeling trapped in a vicious cycle. Now that you’re sober, there’s a lot of time on your hands. But that doesn’t mean you’re left to your own devices. Recovery requires structure. Sticking to your recovery goals, meetings, and appointments is vital to setting a foundation that can help you throughout life. Knowing what time you plan on doing things can also give you something to look forward to every day. You don’t have to deal with fear of the unknown. Being able to plan, prepare, and show up for things when you say you will can help you build character and self-esteem.

Interested in Sober Living?

Riviera Recovery presents a great opportunity for people in early recovery to continue to build their foundation, learn to live a fulfilling life, and begin living responsibly in the “regular world”. Are you looking for a place to land after treatment? Or simply want to explore your sober living options? We have homes in West LA and Palisades/Malibu that offer time and space to grow. Give us a call at 1-855-207-2798 to learn more about your options.  

Why Choose Sober Living?

You may have heard that going back home after a sting at rehab is actually not always be a good idea. But why? 

The Difficult Decision

Most people get out of rehab, convinced that they can return to the same negative environment that once fueled their addiction and manage to stay clean for the rest of their lives. However, it’s true what they say that being at an in-patient program is the easiest part of maintaining sobriety.  This is because you are safely tucked away in a setting that safeguards your choices and keeps you in check. In that sober environment, you don’t have the stress of everyday living to worry about or are forced to deal with triggers like particular locations or specific people. This is why most individuals leave rehab feeling very confident in their sobriety only to return home and find that they cannot cope with daily responsibilities, toxic relationships, and everything else that comes with being sober. 

The Right Choice

This is where sober living programs come in handy, and it is, by all means, the right choice for people who are fresh out of treatment. While these programs are a lot less intensive than rehabilitation centers and provide clients the freedom to leave if work or responsibility demands it, and even attend outside meetings and visit loved ones, they have been shown to offer the best defense for long-term sobriety.   No two sober living facilities are alike; however, what the most reputable facilities have in common is that they provide structure while offering support and encouragement through early recovery. They also ensure that the safety of the residents comes first, which means that they aren’t allowed to bring contraband such as drugs and alcohol while additionally being required to submit to random drug and alcohol tests to mitigate unsafe behavior. Sober living homes are designed to be more intensive for a shorter length of time, however, since they are funded primarily by the residents, individuals can typically stay for as long as necessary.   A licensed and fully furnished sober living home like Riviera Recovery offers countless learning experiences, opportunities, therapies, and essential life skills that patients can incorporate into their daily life in order to make the transition back into society much easier. In addition to regular drug testing, such facilities tend to also provide individual therapy, family therapy, animal therapy, group therapy, and so much more.   Anyone who wants to learn to live without the use of alcohol or other drugs needs a structured and safe, reminiscent-of-home type place that is dedicated to creating a supportive, safe, substance-free environment. Therefore, if you or a loved one is thinking about entering a sober living home, ensure the facility you join has the following characteristics to receive the highest quality care possible:
  •   Offer numerous support services
  •   Provide employment or education assistance to help you establish a healthy, fulfilling lifestyle and a new sense of purpose
  •   Provide both off and onsite support staff, while enforcing strict resident rules and regulations
  •   It should be a clean, structurally sound facility that provides comfortable beds, furniture, and fully functional appliances
  •   Provided regular, scheduled interventions including drug and alcohol tests to keep you accountable to your sobriety goals
   

How to Have Fun While Maintaining Your Sobriety

Detoxing alcohol and drugs from your body can be a difficult process. Once you have gone through the detox process and have begun your journey to recovery, you may want to start living your life again. One thing many addicts struggle with is enjoying their life and having fun, while also maintaining their sobriety. For many years, the fun has included the use of alcohol and drugs for many addicts, so many addicts are unsure how to find a new normal that does not include these things. Fortunately, there are many fun things you can do to entertain yourself and enjoy your life, while also maintaining your sobriety. Here are five ways to have fun while maintaining your sobriety.

Improve Your Health

One of the ways that you can fun while maintaining your sobriety is to work on improving your health. Many people focused on their sobriety turn to working out as a way to have fun, release tension and cope with the challenges of daily life while remaining sober. Every person has their own individual likes and dislikes when it comes to fitness, but the great thing is, there is a workout that is perfect for everyone. If you like more calming and relaxing workouts, yoga or pilates may be ideal for you. If you want to burn off some steam and enjoy listening to your music, running or brisk walking may be perfect. Team sports offer you the ability to interact with others while also improving your health. And lifting weights can help to strengthen your body and your resolution to remain sober.

Educate Yourself

Most people do not immediately think of school and learning as being fun. However, attending classes that interest you or can help you grow in your career can provide you with mental stimulation and a sense of accomplishment. For those working towards their sobriety, you want to do things that make you feel proud of yourself and give you a sense of pride and accomplishment. Taking educational courses can provide you with this, and if you enjoy the courses you are taking, can also be fun.

Give Back to the Community

Giving back to the community can be more fun than most people realize. Not only can it be fun, but you are working to help others in need in your community. At one point in time, you were likely in need and your friends and family may have stepped in to assist you. What better way to pay it forward than to do something great for your community. There are many different ways you can give back to your community, including helping at a homeless shelter, serving meals at a soup kitchen, or walking dogs at an animal shelter. Find something that interests you and volunteer your time.

Find a Hobby

As you work toward maintaining your sobriety, it is important to take time for yourself and to find things that you enjoy. Many addicts lose themselves in being an addict. You may no longer know exactly who you are and what you enjoy. Take the time to rediscover yourself and what you like by finding a hobby. You may want to take up carpentry and woodworking, or you may wish to join a bowling league. Find a hobby allows you to spend your time doing something that you enjoy and something that provides you with pleasure.

Cultivate Healthy Relationships

Lastly, take the time to cultivate healthy relationships. Get to know people who live a healthy, sober lifestyle, and then spend time with those people. Go out to lunch, take in a movie, or just go for an evening walk with them. You may lose friendships when you get clean, as you are no longer wish to hang around those who are involved with alcohol and drugs. It can be lonely without those friends who have been in your life. Cultivating healthy friendships helps you to overcome loneliness and allows you to have fun with people who have a positive influence on your life. Are you struggling with addiction? Getting sober is not an easy process, and is not something you should attempt to do on your own. If you want to kick your addiction and work on your sobriety, Riviera Recovery can assist you. Riviera Recovery is a sober living home with locations in Malibu and in the Pacific Palisades area of Los Angeles. Contact us today to learn how we can help you on your path to sobriety.