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Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

The fact I am writing this article is funny to say the least. I have been active in recovery and broke for some decent periods of time, and still work on developing new strategies for managing my finances the best I can. Recovery affects different people in different ways, especially when it comes to money. Some people find themselves able to fill a new type of job opportunity, advance quickly and make a little more money. Others stay humble and work a simple job (or 2), and a lot of us find new ways to handle the money we’re making. Some find that while clean and sober they are actually able to hold onto more of their money for the first time in a long time. Others find that they develop new spending habits that don’t exactly afford them much growth or stability.

I am very familiar with being clean, sober, and broke! I have worked 2 jobs for months to afford my rent and life-style, and I have worked 1 very simple job just stay humble, get by and focus on sobriety, and now I work a wonderful job and stay active in recovery and still find myself broke.

No joke I still have to remind myself of a few dangers of spending in sobriety. To manage your finances in sobriety you need to remember to focus on the necessities. You should do things like:

  • Set goals- keep track of your progress
  • Buy Groceries- learn to cook (still working on that)
  • Cut back on expensive activities

Do NOT waste your money!

There are a lot of things that happen when we get sober. I can offer some good experience on what NOT to do (because I did it). One thing is we waste money on things that aren’t exactly going to help us in recovery or building a life we can manage. Sometimes we do deserve to give ourselves a gift, but we can also develop shopping and spending addictions. There are some strategies to avoid wasting money:

Don’t go too crazy with new Tattoos/Piercings…

Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

I’m so guilty of this in my first few months it is not even funny. I spent a good $1,000 in one month alone after 2 out of treatment on new ink. I looked back after a month and realized I could have easily invested in so many things that would have contributed to my future instead. I love my ink no lie, but I’m reminded every time I ride the bus of the car I could have!

Don’t blow money on new clothes…

Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

Clothes that we don’t need can be a way we treat ourselves and try to change our presentation, but when they are not necessary we should be able to step back and stay humble. Sure once you have changed as a person it’s nice to dress the part, but you have to change the behavior.

No need to stock-pile shoes…

Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

Shoes are awesome! New Nike’s go a long way, but to say that building my collection of kicks is more important than paying my bills on time is no way to manage my finances.

Learn where to get cheap coffee…

Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

Being young in recovery means (just taking a WILD guess) you’re probably well informed where the closest Starbucks or Duncan Donuts is, and the hours of operation. Sobriety makes some people, myself included, coffee snobs. Be sure you’re not spending too much on your intake. I know my Venti White-Mocha with 4 shots of expresso and whipped cream is a luxury, not a necessity…. well, sometimes.

Going out for dinner can eat up your wallet…

Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

Eating out is another luxury we can afford to take advantage of sometimes. But before going to the fanciest place in town and buying the steak and lobster special 4 times a week, make sure that you’re taking care of your responsibilities at home. Maybe try that ‘cooking’ thing I keep hearing about.

Vapes and Vape Accessories…

Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

The newest renovations in ‘vapor smoking technology’ are making a huge influence on our culture today, and people in recovery seem to love buying up ‘mods’ and ‘flavors’ to build their vape-game. No harm done, unless you have no money for food because you had to get that custom tank and new ‘Juicy-Fruit/Apple-Pie/Strawberry-Shortcake/Banana-Smoothie/Mucho-Menthol-’ mix.

Try not to chain-smoke cigarettes…

Clean and Sober, but Still Broke? How to Manage Your Finances in Recovery

www.wifflegif.com

Smokers, don’t get me wrong I know it can be tough. When I first got sober I smoked much more than usual, the struggle is REAL! However, if you can consider the fact that a large chunk of you change is going to pay for that habit, it may be a way to help you get ahead of your finances if you try to cut back on cigarettes, or even switch to a cheaper brand.

If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135

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