Staying clean and sober takes commitment and a lot of hard work. There’s no magic wand to keep alcoholics and drug addicts from relapse. However, there are ways to prevent relapse.
5 Tips to Prevent Relapse
- Avoid Triggers. Avoiding social or emotional pressures such as bars and parties or people that anger or antagonize is a smart move in early sobriety. There is an acronym that helps us remember this: HALT. Don’t get too HUNGRY, ANGRY, LONELY, or TIRED. Taking special care to avoid these triggers is one way to curtail relapse.
- Find someone else to help. There’s a reason recovery programs focus on helping others- it works! Helping someone else takes the focus off of addictive thinking and behavior and puts focus on selfless behavior. It also builds self-esteem by doing something positive for another.
- Use your sober network and/or sponsor. Twelve-step programs encourage calling or meeting with sober members who are further along the sober path. This is a valuable tool that can reap many rewards including establishing a substance-free social group, breaking addictive habits, and focusing on new sober behavior.
- Make a prevention plan and stick to it. Sit down with your sponsor or counselor and make a plan to avoid relapse. Check in about it daily.
- Avoid people, places, situations that you used around. This is a no-brainer. If you avoid those people and places you are less likely to be triggered. Replace them with new positive habits such as exercise, hobbies, meditation, or spending time outside.
No one thing will keep a shaky addict or alcoholic from relapse. A multi-pronged approach involving supportive people and situations will help to keep the new comer on track.
If you are faced with challenges along the sober path, we are here to help. Please call us today.