When you have a relapse, it’s important to immediately ask for help. The really good news is that you caught yourself and recognized you had a relapse. The reason you want to ask for help right away, is to prevent the escalation of the addiction. You don’t want to let it take off.
People in recovery have relapses all the time. That doesn’t mean it’s not a big deal for your mental and physical health. It is a big deal, in that it can cause you to feel ashamed, scared, confused, and disappointed in yourself. By getting back to basics and surrounding yourself with people in recovery you can alleviate some of your difficult feelings. You can also do more to ensure you won’t relapse again.
Ask yourself, what was the trigger or triggers that implemented the relapse. Were you hanging out with your old crowd? People who are not in recovery may want to entice you back to alcohol or drugs because they want you to reinforce their behavior. When you put down the drink or drug, they may have felt angry. They lost you, and you represented something that they couldn’t attain, at least not yet.
Getting back to your recovery group friends will most likely be a heartwarming experience for you. They will welcome you back and reinforced all the positive steps you’ve made in your recovery. At this point, it is a good idea to take some time to reflect upon triggers that may have led to the relapse, like being lackadaisical about attending meetings or skipping therapy. You could also have had a crisis that overwhelmed you so much you resorted to alcohol or drugs to ease the emotional or physical discomfort or pain.
Getting back to basics involves forgiveness—forgiving yourself. You may have made a poor and dangerous choice by taking drugs and or picking up the bottle, but you’re not a bad person! Try to keep the relapse in perspective. Look at how many days, weeks, months you already managed to stay sober. You don’t have to start all over again, you simply start where you are. Realizing this may give you the impetus to more fervently dig into your recovery basics.
Make a list of what getting back to basics means for you. What things are you going to do differently this time? What behaviors do you need to work on in therapy? Have you been getting enough exercise and making room in your day for some down time? You’re on your way to lifelong sobriety one day at a time. Good for you!
Cypress Lakes Lodge offers treatment for addiction in a peaceful, remote, oxygen-rich environment. The program encompasses holistic addiction therapy for the mind, body, and soul. The focus is on physical, mental, and emotional well-being by generating the balance of life-enriching treatment, wellness, and healthy, sober, sustainable relationships. Call us to get started: 409-331-2204