Top 5 Triggers of Relapse and How to Avoid Them.
Stress is the top cause of relapse and many addicts turn to their substance of choice as a maladaptive way of coping with it.
1. Stress - Stress is the top cause of relapse and many addicts turn to their substance of choice as a maladaptive way of coping with it.
You can't eliminate all the stress from your life, but you can avoid situations of negative or extreme stress by making changes in your lifestyle, relationships, and priorities. • Mindfulness and relaxation training • Managing your time more effectively so that you are not operating in panic mode • Increasing healthy behaviors, such as moderate exercise and healthy eating.
2. People or Places Connected to the Addictive Behavior - It is important to have ways to handle your feelings when that happens so that you have another way of coping besides relapsing to your addiction. Your family members might also be a
trigger, even if they were not directly involved because they make you feel more child-like and vulnerable.
3. Negative or Challenging Emotions - Addicts need effective ways of tolerating, managing and making sense of the negative feelings encountered in daily life. Alcohol, drugs or addictive behaviors used to provide temporary relief from those feelings, but you can't rely on them anymore.
4. Seeing or Sensing the Object of Your Addiction - A slight reminder of your addiction can trigger relapse during recovery. A whiff of cigarette smoke, watching people sip cocktails in a cafe.
Having a substitute behavior, as well as doing relaxation techniques, can help you resist these triggers.
5. Times of Celebration – Positive situations, such as birthdays and holidays, can be triggers, too. You feel happy, in control and sure you can handle that one drink, that one smoke or that one mild flirtation with the attractive stranger. But can you keep it under control?
An addict frequently loses their capacity to know when to stop.
Having a buddy can help in situations where you are at risk of relapse. Find someone you trust and respect to kindly but firmly persuade you to stop what you are doing if you do start to relapse. Avoid going into situations where you are at high risk of relapse alone, as you might be surprised how quickly your resolve and good intentions disappear once the party's started.