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Avoid Relapsing and Get on With Your Life!

The powerful forces of temptation and resilience clash. A newly sober individual fights back against their desire to consume alcohol We at Foundation have seen many people come and go. We’ve played our part in helping those who’ve trusted us achieve their goal of sober living and a prosperous, alcohol-free life. It is very important to us that our clients continue to succeed when they are thrusted back into their lives, where careers, family and stress bombard them on a daily basis. Of course family and career are rewarding, but to say they don’t stress us out at times would be quite the fictional statement, wouldn’t it? The sad truth is, many people who were addicted to or abused alcohol will relapse.

Relapse, defined by the American National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, is the resumption of alcohol drinking following a prolonged period of abstinence.

The causes vary, and there’s a temptation to blame just about everyone and everything surrounding the individual affected, including themselves. This is the unfortunate reality, but it doesn’t have to come to pass. There are many different ways to prevent relapse, and nothing would make us happier than to share them with you, the reader.

Switch Up Your Friends

It’s a harsh truth that sometimes, a client who goes through rehab will have to make new friends or reconnect with old ones who aren’t associated with alcohol. At least temporarily. Temptation is a relapse trigger, a big one, and a recovering alcoholic or alcohol abuser needs to remove themselves from people who they associate with drinking. It may also be prudent to distance yourself from toxic relationships, negative social circles and anyone who may feel the need to judge you for having gone through rehab. We live in a world where there is still stigma surrounding alcohol addiction and rehabilitation. That being said, never feel bad about going to rehab. It takes a level of courage, determination and strength of character unknown to most people to seek treatment for alcoholism and abusive drinking. There will always be negative people out there, with more opinions than wisdom, and the best approach would be to avoid them until you’re in the right state of mind to not let it bother you.

You Went to Rehab. You Succeeded, Now Take Advantage of Aftercare Services

There are many forms of aftercare services, and most residential rehab centres offer them. 12-step meetings, continued group support sessions, halfway houses and holistic or spiritual meetup groups are just a few options available. Try and work with the addiction specialists who helped you while in rehab to find the best option. After all, it’s your body, mind and life. Finding what works for you is what matters most.

Tips & Tricks For Avoiding Relapse

  • Maintain supportive relationships you built during recovery with others who suffered from alcohol addiction or abuse. You can politely ask for their email addresses, phone numbers or if they live near to you, suggest you meet for coffee to have friendly and supportive conversation
  • Build a strong routine that involves a schedule and plenty of activities. Make it work for you, and try to include exercise and things that keep you engaged as much as possible
  • Keep a journal and write anything you’d like on it’s pages. An online blog also works, but studies have shown writing by hand is more engaging and helps you organize your thoughts better. Don’t worry, it can be completely private, there is no need to tell others what you’re writing or thinking
  • If you’re spiritual or religious, reconnect with what’s important to you. The beauty of having some kind of belief is that often others do as well, and you can foster meaningful relationships and participate in purposeful activities that are cathartic and rewarding to you
  • Volunteer! There are numerous benefits here. You don’t have to become a saint, but even an hour a week is a great way to socialize and work on empathy, which has benefits to those around you, as well as your own state of mind

The Thought of Relapsing is Frightening, But…

You don’t need to spend every day in fear. In fact, trying to go through life constantly scared of the possibility of relapsing is a potential trigger to relapsing! A self-fulfilling prophecy, so to speak. Telling you how to feel isn’t going to work, but think of all the joy and possibilities a sober life has to offer you. The opportunities are limitless, so try focusing on what is important to you and the people and things that are fulfilling and worth it.