Relapse can happen for a variety of reasons: stress, lack of support, or not prioritizing your sobriety. Taking the time to understand what could trigger you to relapse and avoiding it can help you stay on your recovery journey. In addition, consider the following tips from Twin Lakes Recovery Center that can help prevent relapse.
Tips for Preventing Relapse While in Recovery
- Don’t give in to peer pressure. Your friends may pressure you to drink with them even though they know you are sober. They may expect you to attend parties or gatherings where alcohol is served and may even offer you a drink. You can avoid these situations altogether, or, if you must attend a function, bring along a sober friend who understands your recovery. If you are uncomfortable in any situation, you have the right to leave. You will also want to limit contact with anyone who does not respect your sobriety. Find new peers who “pressure” you into healthy choices.
- Avoid settling back into an old routine. A mistake people often make when completing treatment is returning home and falling back into old routines and behaviors. It is natural to settle back into something you are comfortable with, but this may trigger you to relapse. Creating new routines can help prevent relapse and establish behaviors to support your recovery.
- Recognize your triggers. In recovery, it’s important to know what (or who) will make you want to drink or use drugs again. Maybe there are specific people that you associated with your addiction that could pose a trigger and cause you to relapse. There could be places you frequented while using alcohol or other substances that may not be ideal to visit while in recovery. If sad or negative feelings are a trigger, plan ahead of time how you will deal with them when they arise.
- Learn ways to cope with stress. If you are overly stressed, you might want to use alcohol or other substances as a way to cope. While in recovery, learning new ways to manage stress can help prevent the possibility of relapse. There are various ways to relieve stress, such as writing your feelings in a journal, meditating to promote mindfulness, or talking to a trusted friend. You may find that exercising can help manage stress and give you perspective on intense emotions you may feel from time to time.
- Combat boredom. Boredom is a leading cause of relapse. When you have too much time on your hands and nothing to do, it can cause you to want to use alcohol or other substances. There are endless ways to keep busy and combat boredom. Having a structured schedule is one way to fill up your day with meaningful activities. Going to work or school, taking part in family activities, enjoying a hobby, and focusing on health and wellness can all help prevent relapse while giving you something to look forward to doing.
- Avoid feeling lonely. Feeling lonely is a common reason for relapse. You may have damaged relationships or cut ties with those who do not support your sobriety. You can avoid feeling lonely by finding others who understand your journey. Attending 12-step meetings can connect you with others who have similar experiences. Volunteering in your community can be rewarding and give you the opportunity to give back and make new friends. You may also want to join a gym or take a fitness class to stay fit and socialize with others.
- Get enough sleep. Sleep is important while in recovery. You need to make sure you are getting enough sleep or you could put yourself at risk for relapse. If you do not get enough sleep, it can affect your overall health and well-being. When you suffer from a lack of sleep, you can become irritable, anxious, unmotivated, and depressed. These symptoms can increase the likelihood of relapse.
After completing a treatment program, the recovery center may have provided you with tools to use to prevent relapse. You will want to use these tools and attend any counseling sessions that have been recommended. Following through with aftercare plans is important in maintaining a lasting recovery.
Contact Us for Help
Are you or a loved one struggling with addiction and looking for a Georgia treatment center? The caring staff at Twin Lakes Recovery Center is here to help. We are a leading Monroe, Georgia, treatment center and offer a variety of treatments and programs for people of all ages. To find out more about what programs and services are available at Twin Lakes Recovery Center, fill out our contact form online today.