Updated on April 17, 2024
2 min read

I've heard that mindfulness meditation can be helpful for addiction recovery. Can anyone recommend some good resources or apps to get started?

Mindfulness meditation can be great for people recovering from an addiction. It can help you stay focused and be present in the moment, which can be helpful when you have cravings or triggers.

Here are some ways to get started on practicing mindfulness:

Start Small and Build Up Gradually

You should understand that mindfulness is a skill that takes practice. The more you work on your awareness, the better you’ll get at mindfulness.

But don’t get discouraged if your mind wanders during sessions; it’s perfectly normal. Here are some things you can do to build mindfulness:

  • Micro-moments of mindfulness: Instead of doing long meditation sessions, start with something small like focusing on breathing, walking, waiting, etc.
  • Guided meditations: Various apps, such as Headspace, Calm, and Insight Timer, provide short, 3-minute guided meditations. 

You can also join a meditation class, read books, or listen to podcasts to help you practice. Additionally, a therapist specializing in mindfulness-based therapy can help you personalize your practice to work through any challenges.

How to Use Mindfulness in Your Daily Routine

When practicing mindfulness, you don’t have to sit still and focus all day. Here are a few ways you can incorporate mindfulness into your daily routine: 

  • Mindful walking: When walking, pay attention to your movements, surroundings, and the sensation of your feet touching the ground. 
  • Mindful eating: Before eating, take a moment to savor the sight, smell, and taste of your food. This will help you slow down and be more present in the moment.
  • Mindful showers: Pay attention to the feeling of water on your skin, the soap's scent, and the sound of running. This can be a grounding morning ritual that helps center you for the day.
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Tips for Staying Motivated

  • Focus on progress, not perfection: Take it one step at a time and focus on your progress instead of the challenges you’re struggling with.
  • Connect with others: Find a buddy to practice mindfulness with or join online forums where you can share experiences and find encouragement.
  • Don't push yourself too hard: Take a break if you feel overwhelmed or frustrated. Mindfulness should feel supportive, not stressful.

Mindfulness has more benefits than just managing cravings. It can improve sleep and focus. It can help you stay calm and reduce stress as you go through addiction recovery. If you feel that mindfulness isn’t enough, don’t be afraid to ask for help from your doctor or your loved ones. You can also call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s national helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

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Updated on April 17, 2024

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