5 Important Things to Look For in Transitional Living in MalibuOne of the most important steps an individual who has completed an inpatient addiction treatment program can take is to spend a period in sober living, also referred to as transitional living. Taking up residence in a home that is drug and alcohol free, where new healthy habits and lifestyle choices can be practiced and reinforced, is one of the most effective aspects of aftercare in recovery. In the early days of newfound sobriety an individual is still vulnerable to triggers that could spark a relapse. Even the most iron clad relapse prevention plan can wither if one is promptly replanted into a trigger-infested environment that could tempt someone to use again. The time spent in transitional living Malibu allows an opportunity to fortify recovery by making new sober friends, becoming involved in a recovery community, learning new life skills, and learning how to be accountable and responsible again. That said, there is a wide spectrum of quality among transitional living housing. Pick the wrong one and not only is your money wasted, but the house itself could trigger a relapse if not sufficiently managed and monitored. Knowing what features to seek in transitional living Malibu is key to shoring up sobriety and launching a new, fulfilling life.
5 Things to Look For in a Sober Living Environment
- Commitment to enforcing substance-free house. A sober living home that isn’t sober is of no value to anyone. To ensure the drug and alcohol-free living space, the transitional home must have on-site management. The active presence of a house manager is a powerful deterrent to using, selling, or purchasing drugs or alcohol, as the majority of sober living homes feature a zero tolerance policy for substance use or possession. Regular or random alcohol and drug testing adds another layer to maintaining the sober environment, and must be administered consistently.
- Structure. The transitional house needs to have clearly posted and articulated house rules. A clear set of rules and expectations helps keep the sober home from devolving into chaos, filth, or becoming unsafe. Rules and responsibilities should include provisions regarding personal safety, such as prohibiting any violence, threats of physical harm, weapons, and physical or sexual harassment. House rules are an important element in recovery, as it helps foster accountability to the group, as well as integrate normalcy back into the daily obligations of life.
- Enforcement of house rules. Choose a sober living home that is committed to having its residents actually follow the house rules, that the rules have teeth. The residents must be expected to abide by the house rules or face probation or expulsion from the house. Enforcing house rules will protect the safety, cleanliness, and integrity of the sober home for all the residents.
- Attendance in house meetings and activities. Transitional housing works best when the housemates have a sense of ownership in operations and policies. A quality sober living home will hold mandatory weekly house meetings where the residents are free to share grievances in a safe space, and also suggest improvements to the operations of the house. The meetings also allow for planning and organizing group activities and events for the residents. Group activities are an intrinsic social element that helps promote a sober lifestyle.
- Participation in recovery group. It is important for sober living residents to continue to actively participate in their recovery, both during treatment and in aftercare sober living. For this reason, quality sober living homes require attendance in a 12-step program like A.A. or N.A. or a non 12-step program such as SMART Recovery. The house must provide transportation to and from the meetings for those with no access to a car.