In recovery, there is a lot of talk about emotions, spirituality, and self-awareness. One thing you may not think about is money management. If you are wondering why anybody is thinking about money when in recovery from addiction, the truth is it is far more important than people realize. Having the right resources can make a difference in how you are able to manage finances in sobriety.
Financial management is a life skill many recovering addicts may not have learned or may have lost over time while addicted to drugs or alcohol. Poor money management may not seem connected at first to spending it on drugs or alcohol, it is tied to substance abuse. Poor money management leads to debt, debt to stress, then to drugs or alcohol to cope with the stress, and so on. It is a skill that can be taught and learned over time. Like other relapse triggers, the key to avoiding relapse is to understand the trigger and learn how to avoid it. Recovery is the right time and place to learn these skills.
Money Management Tips and Tools
Recovery is the first priority on your checklist if you have addiction. It takes time and focus. If you return to work too early, it can ruin any financial progress you may have made. Finding a job is critical if you are headed into the unemployment line following recovery for any reason. Having cash flow is important to affording the things you need to get by including food, medicine, medical care, etc. To achieve success, it is important to draw the line between focusing on having money and becoming obsessed with gaining financial resources. Fixating on money can cause strain. Families must help people in recovery manage money even if it is not openly discussed. This is a helpful way to ensure the person does what is right and builds a sound future.
Some of the following tips can be helpful in teaching responsibility for financial resources:
- Taking inventory of assets and debts
- Learning to separate needs from wants
- Creating a budget that covers needs, allows repayment of debt, builds savings, and leaves rooms for some wants
- Storing money in a safe place (savings account with no debit card access)
- Taking advantage of resources for free financial planning from banks, etc
- Using envelopes to budget expenses
- Setting up direct deposit for check to avoid cashing it at a bank
- Staying close in contact with sponsor in first few months of rehab and checking in on paydays
- Speaking with friends about triggers to avoid relapse
- Setting and keeping savings goals by setting up auto transfers to separate savings accounts
Oceanfront will help you get a hold of your addiction and support your recovery. Financial planning is challenging when you are not used to thinking about it, but we can help. Our goal is to support you in recovery and beyond, to get you on your feet so you can learn to plan, save, and thrive in the real world. Give us a call to find out how we can help you start on your plan to enter recovery: 877-279-1777