A short while after completing treatment, the recovering addict may sometimes wonder if he will ever again have fun. The healthy euphoria that new recovery brings into a person’s life, post-rehab, is sometimes called a pink cloud. After a while, however, the pink clouds of early sobriety may part, and those who are not working a healthy program may end up relapsing. There are many things you could be doing to avoid a relapse, which are all strong building blocks in our relapse prevention education at Royal Life Centers at The Haven. Here are a few healthy ways to mitigate a potential relapse.
Go to Meetings:
Those who attend meetings regularly are less likely to relapse due the support that they receive from a sober community of like-minded peers in Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. Because self-isolation can trigger relapse by developing into depressive symptoms of hopelessness, newcomers are encouraged to reach out to other 12-Step members for support in early recovery—with goals clearly oriented toward building social bonds within a group consciousness. Having a strong sober community, and being active in that community, will help you avoid a relapse.
Work the Steps:
AA and NA meetings, for the early-recovering addict, are great to the extent that they provide a social context around which the newcomer may position his life. But it is also important to work the 12-steps, which offers the addict a framework for understanding his or her personal recovery. Each step works like a formula for self-improvement, each one following in a progression of spiritual grown and healing.
Find a Sponsor:
In order to admit to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs, we must first find a sponsor. A sponsor is another member of the program who takes the newcomer through the steps, acting as a kind of guide. Every member of the program has a sponsor, old-timers and newcomers alike, with this sponsor acting as an invaluable sounding board and support system for the addict. We encourage all of our clients to find a sponsor at the very beginning of his AA or NA journey, as the social bonds that we form with other addicts and alcoholics through working an honest program, through working the steps, will prove as crucial to healing. Participating in a program of recovery will absolutely aid you to avoid a relapse.
Hobbies and Goals:
With so much free time to fill which we might otherwise have diverted into deviant modes of behavior, a recovering addict may experience boredom in a large way. Often, without hobbies or goals to fill the empty hours, the same boredom that led an addict to using drugs in the first place will surface as old behaviors and habits sometimes come to the fore. Having goals can be empowering, and can embolden a person’s desire to live—not only to get out of bed in the morning and survive, but happily to thrive.
Avoid Old People, Places, and Things:
As they sometimes contain painful memories of the past, old people one knew and places one frequented while using drugs can trigger relapse. Addiction is a disease of disordered learning, and resides in a person’s memory—which is why we advise that anybody who is in early recovery relearn healthy behaviors by abiding routines that include measurable tasks, such as making up one’s bed in the morning, eating a balanced meal, having healthy social interactions, and going to meetings.
Our program at the Royal Life Centers at the Haven detox is one wholly stepped in the philosophy of the Twelve Steps. Because detox from drugs and alcohol does not last very long—and is often a prelude to longer-term care—we encourage each of our clients to follow their detox protocol with our residential treatment, where they will further learn how to identify their triggers.
Just as addiction develops through self-conditioning, self-improvement is possible through that same process of learning. If you find yourself currently in the thick of addiction, and have decided that you are ready to lead a new way of life, contact the Royal Life Centers at the Haven detox today. You can also call to speak with our drug and alcohol treatment intake staff, which is available 24/7 at (877)-RECOVERY.