How to Prevent Relapse: Managing Your Emotions
Relapse may not be you think it is. It’s a gradual process that can actually begin weeks or even months before you consume drugs or alcohol.
But, if you can learn how to identify the emotional and mental precursors to a substance abuse relapse, you may be able to prevent it from happening at all.
In this post, we’ll help you understand the emotional stage of relapse. You’ll learn how to tell when you’re experiencing it and how to take action before it progresses to the next stage.
Preventing Relapse by Identifying and Coping with Your Emotions
Life is a series of ups and downs. As a recovering addict, how you cope with difficult circumstances can either set you up for continued sobriety or it can set the stage for relapse. When you were actively using alcohol or other drugs, substances may have provided you with an easy escape from depression , anxiety and stress. Now that you’re sober, you’ll need to practice the coping techniques you learned during rehabilitation.
However, if you aren’t paying attention to your feelings, it’s easy for your emotions to sneak up on you. That’s why it’s important to spend time each day reflecting on your experiences and processing how you really feel about them. Believe it or not, people don’t always know when or why something is making them feel angry , disappointed or stressed out. So, unless you make a point to sort through your feelings on a regular, daily basis, you could be completely unaware that these emotions are present.
7 Healthy Coping Skills for Preventing Relapse
Only after successfully recognizing your emotions can you begin using healthy coping techniques to work through them. As a reminder, healthy coping skills could include the following:
• Talking to someone you trust
• Writing down your thoughts
• Remembering the big picture
• Listen to music
• Practicing meditation
• Reaching out to your sponsor
• Attending a support group meeting
Everyone copes differently, so don’t feel like you must choose a technique from this list. The important part is not in HOW you choose to cope but recognizing WHEN you need to cope.
What Happens When Emotions Go Unchecked?
If your emotions get the better of you, it’s possible that you may enter the next stage of the relapse process. In this stage you will start to feel uncomfortable in your own skin, and you won’t be sure why. That’s because there’s a war going on in your own mind. This is the mental stage of relapse.
Learn More About The Raleigh House
The Raleigh House is residential addiction treatment center located in Denver, Colorado. For more information about the addictions we treat or our rehabilitation programs, contact us today . Our addiction specialists are standing by to help.