Identifying Your Needs in Early Recovery

Updated: Jul 20, 2021

Taking the first step towards sobriety initially consists of putting down the drug or drink and asking for help. Early sobriety can bring on an overwhelming amount of different emotions. It is important for the addict to set themselves

up for success by identifying what their emotional and physical needs are. It is always important to seek medical attention from a health care provider to make sure detox is done safely. However, after detox, what can the addict do next to ensure they achieve long term sobriety?


H.A.L.T is an acronym that stands for hungry, angry, lonely, tired. H.A.L.T is used in the area of mental health to help an individual identify their basic needs. H.A.L.T for addiction recovery can help create a solid foundation that prevents relapse. Everyone gets hungry, angry, lonely, and tired. However, in early recovery it is important to identify these feelings to tend to one’s basic needs. By identifying our basic needs, it is easier to manage other unwanted feelings or triggers that may come up. Food and sleep are two basic needs that have a huge impact on one’s overall sense of well being. Prioritizing H.A.L.T in an addict’s daily action plan is essential for long term success and re-learning how to deal with emotions.

Sense of Support

It is essential to develop support from loved ones, support groups, or health care providers in early recovery. It is highly suggested to join a 12-Step program such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous. Although, 12-Step programs are not required to achieve long term sobriety and abstinence from drugs and alcohol. Research shows that having a positive, encouraging support system helps make recovery much easier. Working with a drug and alcohol counselor and/or other sober addicts will help an individual develop goals and learn recovery related skills. It is also important to be honest with family and friends about any support they can provide in early sobriety. Human connection is extremely beneficial to a person’s recovery.

Create A Stable Environment

It is imperative for an addict in early recovery to reside in a stable living environment. Achieving lasting sobriety is very difficult if the people the addict lives with are still drinking or using. Often times, living alone can also be a trigger for addicts in early sobriety. There are many different options to help the recovering addict achieve long term sobriety. Sober living environments are suggested in early recovery to help the recovering addict get back on their feet and learn how to create a stable home environment for themselves. Sober living environments also provide a stable transition home for addicts who need to find different housing to support their recovery from drugs and alcohol. One of the basic elements of addiction recovery is to stay within an environment that supports recovery.

Identifying emotions, tending to basic human needs, and finding support are the key elements in maintaining a lasting and happy recovery. It is important to work with a therapist and other sober addicts to create a realistic and attainable action plan. Each person is unique in the way that their recovery plan is customized to their needs and life. There is no right or wrong way in recovery, as long as abstinence and happiness is achieved.


Works Cited

“Basics of Recovery: Creating a Positive Environment.” JourneyPure 12 Keys, 16 Apr. 2016,

Dooley, Jennifer. “The Importance of Support Systems for Recovering Addicts.” Drug, 4 Nov. 2019,

Foundation, Gateway. “Dangers of HALT: Gateway Foundation Drug Rehab.” Gateway, 12 Mar. 2021,,re%20most%20vulnerable%20to%20relapse.

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Disclaimer: All information provided on is intended for educational purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. Sober Solutions Network is not a medical provider or a treatment center nor does it claim to be. Sober Solutions Network is not affiliated nor support any one particular treatment center. Sober Solutions Network may be paid a fee for advertising organizations that can assist with treating addictions.

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