Overcoming Relapse Triggers: Tips & Techniques For Successful Recovery

Staying sober is an ongoing process that involves finding ways to cope with the triggers and cravings associated with substance abuse. When it comes to addiction recovery, relapse prevention strategies are essential for successful long-term sobriety.  The journey of staying sober can be difficult, but there are many techniques and tips available for those looking to find success in their sobriety. From developing a strong support system to understanding the warning signs of relapse, these tools will help you stay on track as you work towards lasting recovery from addiction.

Know What To Expect

Staying sober is a difficult task that requires a lot of dedication and commitment. Understanding what to expect while staying sober can make the process easier. One of the most important aspects of staying sober is having realistic expectations about your progress, especially during the first few months. Many people who are newly in recovery have unrealistic expectations about how quickly they will feel better and how they will be able to manage once they are back in familiar surroundings.

The first few days of sobriety can be the most difficult. During this time, cravings and withdrawal symptoms are at their peak and it can be hard to focus on anything else. To stay sober during this time, it is important to have a plan in place to help manage these symptoms. This may include attending support group meetings or reaching out to family and friends. It’s important to have a safe circle of people who are supportive of your sobriety and can offer help, guidance and motivation. You can find more information about what might happen after going through rehab here.

Understand Your Triggers

Maintaining a sober life requires recognizing and understanding triggers that can lead to relapse. A trigger is anything that puts a person at risk of engaging in substance abuse. Common triggers include stress, boredom, and negative emotions such as anger or sadness. Triggers are dangerous because they can bring up memories and emotions related to substance abuse, which can make it harder to resist the urge to use. Additionally, triggers can lead to a false sense of security, as people may believe that using just once more won’t lead to relapse. Unfortunately, this is not true; one time is often enough to start the cycle of addiction off again.

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that helps people identify and manage triggers by recognizing the thought patterns and behaviors that lead to the urge to use. CBT helps people understand how their thoughts, feelings, and behavior are connected with one another. CBT also teaches helpful techniques for managing triggers, such as deep breathing, physical activity, mindfulness meditation, and journaling.

Hold Yourself Accountable

Dedication and accountability are also important when staying sober. It is essential to take responsibility for your own choice not to drink and to plan ahead so that you can make healthy decisions when faced with opportunities to drink.  Accountability is an important factor in staying sober, as it allows you to regularly review your progress and ensure that you are taking the correct steps towards maintaining a clean lifestyle.

Setting goals that promote accountability helps you remain committed to a life of abstinence. These goals could include things like attending recovery meetings or therapy sessions, connecting with a sponsor or mentor, committing to a sober lifestyle plan, and tracking progress through journaling or creating a sober calendar. By establishing these goals and making them part of your daily routine, you can create a strong foundation for lasting sobriety. Not only will it help to remind you of your commitment to remain sober, but it can also provide an opportunity to practice coping skills and strategies in order to stay on track.

Immerse Yourself In New Hobbies

There are many benefits to taking up new hobbies as a way to stay sober. Not only can engaging in enjoyable activities help distract from urges or cravings, but it also encourages self-discovery and self-improvement. Developing and maintaining a regular practice of engaging in new hobbies, provides an additional sense of purpose and satisfaction to life which can be beneficial for staying sober. Infact, studies have shown that individuals who take up new hobbies while in sobriety have higher rates of success than those who don’t.

There are countless hobbies you can take up. If you enjoy outdoor activities, camping, fishing and hiking are popular choices. Not only do these activities provide an excellent distraction from cravings, but they also get you out in nature, which can be beneficial for both mental and physical health. If, however, you prefer something a little more gentle, yoga and meditation can be excellent activities for staying sober. Both practices are proven to help reduce stress, improve mental clarity and focus, and provide an avenue for self-reflection.

Final Thoughts

Staying sober is a difficult process, but it can be done. It takes commitment and hard work to stay away from alcohol and other substances for good. By developing a solid support system of friends, family, counselors or therapists you trust, setting realistic goals for yourself, attending self-help meetings, recognizing triggers that make you want to drink/use drugs, and finding healthy outlets like exercise or hobbies are all great ways to help maintain sobriety in the long run. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you need assistance with your journey towards staying sober. It is by no means an easy journey but, if you are able to maintain a clean lifestyle, the benefits will be numerous.