Recovery is Made Easier When you are Kept Busy
When you are a recovering addict, it takes constant work and diligence in order to maintain your sobriety. Recovery is something that you will have to work on consistently for the rest of your life if you would like to remain sober. This involves remaining mentally busy so that you do not get bored and resort to substance abuse.
Overcoming addiction, whether to drugs or alcohol, is not something that happens because you no longer drink or use drugs. Preventing relapse is just as hard as stopping drug and alcohol use. By knowing strategies on how to tackle temptation when you are recovering can help you stay on a sober path.
Here are some mindful activities that can aid in maintaining your sobriety.
- Mindful Breathing: Effective, slow breathing methods can help you re-center yourself during times of pressure, temptation, and vulnerability.
- Mindful Observation: Being mindful about your environment will give you a sense of awareness and a further appreciation for your surroundings.
- Keep a Journal: Writing in a journal is a fantastic way to organize your thoughts. Even if you do not like to write, keeping a journal and writing just a few sentences in it per day and help you reflect on how far you have come.
- Draw and Color: Art has long been known to help people express feelings that may be suppressed. Coloring in a coloring book or sketching and drawing are mindful activities that can help you through the recovery process.
Taking time each and every day to partake in mindful activities can help you better manage your sobriety and prevent relapse from happening.
Mindfulness for Relapse Prevention
When you make the effort to practice mindful activities you are making the conscious effort to sustain your recovery and lessen the chances of relapse. Practising mindfulness aids in the over health of both your mind and your body, especially for those who are in remission from addiction.
Mindfulness aids in recovery through assisting in:
- Practicing self-urge and how to manage and handle cravings and temptation.
- Lessen the need to control what is going on around you.
- Boosts communication through responses of intention rather than reaction.
- Gives you the ability to cope with stressful situations.
By making the effort to be present and aware without judgment, individuals can decrease anxiety and regret and, therefore, lessen their chances of relapse. Another key to relapse prevention is avoiding situations that may trigger certain feelings such as the desire to use. Through mindful practice, individuals will be able to better manage and distinguish themselves from
Urge surfing is a term that is used to describe mindful practice and is part of many relapse prevention plans. Urges and cravings creep in and out, like waves of the ocean. By being aware that you are experiencing a craving and allowing it to pass through mindfulness and acceptance, you are ‘urge surfing’.
A vital part of ‘urge surfing’ is knowing when you are going to experience an urge. This way, you know that it will soon pass. Urges tend to last between 15 to 20 minutes and during this time, it’s essential that you remain focused on your recovery and pull out the coping mechanisms and trigger management tools that were taught to you in your treatment program.
When you are experiencing a craving, notice what is happening in your brain and to your body. Notices the sensations that overcome you, like a ‘wave’ of emotions. Focus on breathing with intention, kind of like focusing on surfing on a surfboard, and ride the wave (the urge/craving) by breathing deeply and riding it out until the craving dissipates.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.