Have you finally seen the light and realized that substance abuse wouldn’t do anything significant for you and your family?
That is superb because not every individual who has an addiction is willing to alter their ways for the better. However, let’s face the truth that staying away from addictive stuff is much harder than sticking to them. The temptations are in high quantities; even your system may start looking for it in the first few months.
Relapse is a process with identifiable signs and symptoms that occur over a period of days, weeks, or months, not a matter of hours or minutes. The goal is to identify your signs and to train others to recognize them so they can help you interrupt them. — Cyndi Turner, LCSW, LSATP, MAC
The thing is, it isn’t just you. Others experience it, yet more and more of them choose to remain sober. In case you want to succeed in that too, find out what you should do to avoid a relapse.
Leave Bad Influences
Eliminating the aspects of your life that make it effortless to return to old habits should be your priority. If it’s a group of friends, prevent hanging out with them. If it’s a place, ensure that you won’t set foot there again. You need to do this step right from the get-go so that you’ll have less or zero access to booze, drugs or cigarettes.
Planning your activities daily or weekly can take your mind off the substances. Your agenda can be as basic as doing the laundry or walking your pet in the beginning. Should you wish to become fit, you can pick the time and date for workout sessions too. What matters is that you always have something worthwhile to accomplish and look forward.
Another fact to realize now is that there are a lot of stressful situations you may get into. On top of that list is dealing with the stigma surrounding people with addiction history. The feeling that you often have to prove you deserve a second shot in life may be present as well. Despite all that, do not allow social pressures to consume your system.
People often consider getting counseling for a long time (sometimes years) before they do so. They hope things will get better, wait for the “perfect” opportunity, question whether it will help, or simply put themselves and their self-care at the bottom of their priority list. — Laurie Leinwand, MA, LPC
Overcome the Cause
What incident pushed you to try drugs or alcohol in the first place? It is usually the fear of facing grief or loss, yet there are other factors too. Nonetheless, you should be able to pinpoint the problem and look for positive ways to overcome them. Once you get rid of the causative agents, you won’t have any reason to deteriorate again.
Keep in mind that there is no such thing as being too weak to resist temptations. That’s only what folks who retrace their wonky path say to justify their actions, but it doesn’t have a basis. The truth is that you can encourage yourself to stay on the sober track and avoid giving in to the lure of addiction. Although you may not personally believe it at first, you’ll notice that saying ‘no’ to bad habits becomes easier when you do it often.
Mindfulness practice increases awareness of thoughts, sensations, and feelings from moment to moment by instructing individuals to simply observe what occurs in each moment within the self, without judgment. By doing so, people can learn to recognize triggers or cravings associated with certain emotions, thoughts, or sensations that may lead to drug or alcohol use. — Urvi Natha, PsyD
Have a Support System
In the end, ascertain that you have people to turn to whenever you feel the urge drink or use drugs. Staying clean won’t be difficult when you’re surrounded by the ones you love and trust.