Alcoholism is one of the hardest addictions to break, because it can be presented and available in so many areas of an adult’s life. Someone who has been an alcoholic usually has had a social life that revolved around alcohol. And even friends that mean well might have a hard time socializing with someone struggling with a drinking problem, because fun nights out and parties generally have alcohol readily available. So a person who is earnest about living a sober life long-term has to be readily prepared to handle the alcoholic triggers that inevitably come during someone’s recovery. Here are five ways to handle alcoholic triggers in recovery.
One: Find Effective Ways To Cope With Stress
Stress has singlehandedly been named the biggest trigger of relapse. Although everyone gets stressed out by different things, the bottom line is that once someone feels stressed out, their first instinct is to turn to whatever gives them comfort. And for an alcoholic, alcohol is usually what they turn to when stress overcomes them. So a person in recovery needs to first identify what one’s biggest stress triggers are, and this can be done with the assistance of an addiction professional. And then the individual needs to go about finding ways to neutralize the stress. One of the biggest things to understand about stress is that it will go away in time. So finding another activity to do in the meantime, like exercising, meditation, or prayer, can be used as ways to cope.
Two: Avoid Places You Used To Drink
People usually have the places that they went to indulge in alcohol, whether its bars, friends’ houses, or parties. During the stages of recovery the alcoholic should avoid those places altogether, because It’s way too tempting to just think that one drink won’t hurt especially when surrounded by people who are drinking. By putting oneself into that position the urge to drink can be just too strong, so it’s best to avoid going to those places altogether.
Three: Only Hang Out With Friends Who Won’t Drink
Friends who know what you’re going through should be willing and informed that you don’t want to be around alcohol. And once they know that, only hang out with friends that are willing to engage in activities that don’t include alcohol. Fortunately, for friends and the alcoholic in recovery, there are many ways to have fun with friends that don’t involve alcohol, like trying a new restaurant, going to see a movie, or going hiking together.
Four: Fill Your Life With Activities
Boredom and complacency can tempt someone into bad habits again. So purposely trying to follow a busy schedule can help avoid the alcoholic trigger of boredom or complacency. The activities can be a mixture of activities, hobbies, and hanging out with friends. The key is rediscovering what life has to offer beyond the realm of alcoholism. These activities will also help distract the mind from obsessing over drinking, which can easily happen when someone is trying to stay away from drinking.
Five: Find A Support Group
And one of the most important things someone in recovery can do is to find a long-term support group filled with likeminded people. These are the ones who are going to know more intimately what the process of recovery entails and how to deal with triggers. They can provide support and advice that no one else can. And by meeting with this group regularly this will help a person maintain perspective on one’s journey, even during discouraging and disheartening times. There also may be some people who the recovering addict can call when feeling dangerously close to relapsing. If an alcoholic in recovery works on these ways to deal with alcoholic triggers, overcoming alcoholism will be easier.