Healing in the Same Environment In Which You Got Sick

Jade Augustine

Photo by MART PRODUCTION from Pexels

“You can’t heal in the same place you got sick.”

If you’re someone who is recovering from addiction or mental illness, there’s a strong chance that you’ve heard this phrase before.

People say this so often because there is some truth to it.

Unfortunately, changing your environment may not be the easiest thing to do. For example, you can’t always make immediate changes to where you live or quit a job without first having a backup plan in place. And if your home or work environment is what led to your struggles in the first place, it may seem impossible even to start the healing journey.

However, there are still things that you can do to help to create the best life that you can, and yes — heal in the environment that you are in.


You may not feel like you have anyone to talk to about your struggles, but your journal will always be there to listen to you. Journaling can have very positive effects on your mental well-being. Writing about your feelings without any restrictions can help you process your thoughts and feelings surrounding recovery.

While it’s always good to have friends and mental health professionals to talk to, sometimes processing things on your own with a journal can be just what you need to get through the day.

Stay With A Friend

If you desperately need out of the house or living situation, consider asking a trusted friend if you can stay with them for a few days or even long-term if that’s an option. Sometimes you need some time away from the environment to gain clarity or better management over possible triggers.

Remove Toxic People

Not all people that you meet in life will be good for you. Someone can be a wonderful person and friend for others but not be a healthy person for you to be around, and that’s okay.

If the person that triggers you is someone you don’t have to see often, it may be easy to remove their influence from their life. If the person is a coworker or a family member that you have no choice in being around for the time being, then that’s where things can become a bit muddled. If this is the case for you, you may want to consider limiting your communication with them to only necessary topics, such as only talking about work or things related to the household.

No matter how much you love someone, it’s best to love them from afar if they hurt you.

After all, how can you expect to laugh with people who made you cry? Trust people that sold you a lie?

Setting proper boundaries with the people in your life can help you immensely through your healing process.


If you can’t escape where you are, one thing that you can do is change what your space looks like. Throw some paint on the walls, put up posters, change your bedspread, rearrange your room.

If you went into one of the darkest places in your life in your room, it could be challenging to be in that room as you try to heal. Taking control of the space you live in can make it almost feel like a brand new room. A new room is a fresh start.

This can be a time where you choose to remove anything related to what you’re recovering from. Examples of things to remove may include:

  • Drug paraphernalia
  • Razor blades
  • Food stashes
  • Scales

Once you create your own safe space, it might be a bit easier to take on the rest of your life and face day-to-day difficulties.

Pick Up A New Hobby

Removing toxicity from your life shouldn’t feel like deprivation. When you remove triggers from your life, you’ll end up with an empty space ready to be filled with positivity and light. So one thing you can do is to fill that space with a hobby you love. Maybe you focus more on art or reading, or perhaps you want to try out a sport or spend some time at the gym.

A hobby can help you get out of your head and out of your present environment, which is incredibly important for healing.

Find your passion and follow it. And chances are, you’ll have many opportunities to meet new friends along the way.

Practice Forgiveness

You don’t have to forgive those who have wronged you. You are under no obligation to extend kindness to people who don’t do the same for you.

However, it is your responsibility to treat yourself with kindness and to forgive yourself. You do the best that you can in the circumstances that you’re in.

Mental illness and addiction are not choices.

Recovery is a choice.

And if recovery is the choice you’re making, you need to make peace with your past to have a better future. You don’t have to love what happened. You don’t have to agree with what happened. But you don’t have to feel unduly ashamed for it either.

You have to accept what happened and let go of any judgment you might still hold toward yourself. When you let it go and forgive yourself, you allow space for healing.

In Conclusion

While you may not be able to change your present circumstances entirely, if you take steps to improve your life, there’s a strong chance that you’ll be able to in the future. There will never be a perfect time and a perfect place to heal.

Healing starts within.

It can be complicated to heal in a world that seems against you, especially when you can do little to change it. Yet, the important thing is to do what you can and keep pushing forward.

It’s never too late or too early to start the healing process. The healing process begins when you decide that you want better for yourself and make choices that align with your goals.

You aren’t recovering who you were before you were sick. That person got sick.

Recovery is rediscovery. Recovering is finding who you are and what your passions are and what you like and dislike. Recovery is learning your values and the things that you believe in. Recovery is creating a version of yourself that you love.

Recovery is when you come out the other side stronger, equipped with healthy coping skills, and making decisions that reflect the person you want to be.

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Jade Augustine is a writer from Fort Collins, Colorado. She is passionate about cats, dogs, entertainment, vegan food, and traveling.

Fort Collins, CO

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