Getting help and admitting you have an addiction is the first step on the long road of recovery. Even once you acknowledge an addiction, though, there are still obstacles to overcome. Avoiding triggers is a life-long task.
Learning what causes them and how to combat them, can keep you from falling into a relapse. In this article we’ll give you the scoop on how to do just that. Over time, managing drug addiction triggers will get easier.
1. Identify drug addiction triggers
Knowing what could trigger a relapse is one of the first steps to finding freedom. Typically, there are three types of triggers: environmental, social, and emotional.
- Environmental triggers are places or situations that bring back poor memories from your past substance abuse;
- Social triggers may be conversations or people who push you to slip back into old habits;
- Emotional triggers are complicated and come from a variety of feelings or mental health-related concerns.
Knowing the types of triggers that affect you can help you avoid these situations or prepare to combat them.
2. Develop a Support System
Developing a support system is another step in remaining strong on your road to recovery. A support system should consist of more than your normal 12-step program or outpatient group. It should consist of others in your life who are committed to seeing you stay clean.
This support system could include friends, groups who share common interests as you or even a spiritual advisor. By surrounding yourself with positive influences and sharing your story with them, you can create an open environment to help you stay on track.
3. Evaluate Relationships
Creating a new support system is essential, but what do you do about the relationships you’ve already built? In order to protect your progress toward sobriety, you’ll need to reflect on your current relationships.
You may find that you need to step back from old relationships, as some of your triggers may be people themselves. Maybe there’s a family member who constantly pushes you towards your addiction or a friend who only wants to hang out in bars. Taking a pause on these friendships may be difficult and harsh, but it will help you in the long run.
4. Take Care of Yourself
To stay healthy, you’ll want to build a lifestyle that makes sobriety sustainable. You’ll want to balance the right amount of sleep, food and exercise so you feel good without substances. By focusing on fulfilling these basic needs, you can create a space to cultivate a healthy mind, body and soul.
Managing stress and other mental triggers is one of the key ways to avoid a relapse. Stress, anxiety, anger and frustration can all feel overpowering and drive a person to use again. By learning how to handle these feelings, you can manage not only your addiction but underlying problems as well.
Taking care of yourself means addressing physical needs as well as emotional ones. Whether you need to invest in your health by joining a workout class or starting therapy, any work you put in towards your health will help you in coping with triggers in addiction.
5. Reflect on Current Habits
One of the best ways for coping with triggers in addiction is avoiding them altogether in the first place. Refraining from visiting places that cause you to fall into drug or alcohol use can save you a lot of trouble. This will be different for everyone, so you’ll need to discern which place and activities are harmful to your recovery.
When you notice these triggers, try to stay away, but if it’s inevitable that you visit one of these places or spend time with people who have added to your addiction, go with someone from your support team and go on your own terms. Always have an exit strategy in mind and stay honest with your support member.
6. Commit to Yourself
Ultimately, you are responsible for your journey and recovery. Knowing the facts, seeking outside opinions and having people stand by you can have a big impact, but when it comes down to it, you are the person making the decision to stay sober each moment.
When you’re faced with addiction triggers, coping strategies that you’ve fostered and the support team you’ve built around you can help. Commit to yourself and commit to change by getting in touch with professional help. Rehab After Work can help you get on track and life the life you want. Call (610)644-6464 now.