Being in recovery is difficult at the best of times, but when you are in recovery during the festive period there are even more difficulties to overcome.
When you suffer from an addiction, being in recovery is how you get better. However, being in recovery comes with numerous pitfalls. At any moment, your cravings could tempt you and you could decide to go back the way in your efforts. Nobody wants to have done so much work to suddenly be back at square one. Therefore, we engage in relapse prevention and self-management.
Part of relapse prevention and self-management measures taken at Christmas time ought to involve monitoring your environment and surroundings. Last week we talked about how to manage alcoholism and recovery during the Christmas period but this week we want to talk about less specific addictions. Here are a few things to keep in mind about why Christmas time is hard for addicts.
You Can Call Help4Addiction For Help
The first thing that we want to revisit is that Help4Addiction are here for you. Whether you require a chat informally over the phone or whether you want to sign yourself into rehab clinic after a particularly tough festive period. Help4Addiction staff are trained to aid you. We can advise you on finding a great rehab clinic near you which will help you to recover or to stave off those temptations.
Even once you have been in recovery for many years, relapse is still possible. We are here for you. You can also reach us on social media if you are unable to make a call yourself.
Temptation Is Everywhere
During the festive. Your temptation to return to drink drugs or some other addiction will be at an all-time high. Temptation is everywhere. You must prepare yourself for situations where you will be placed directly in its path. It will be a true test of how far you have come on your recovery journey. If you can continue to say no at every given opportunity. Here are some top tips to help to manage that temptation without going into a relapse.
Pay Close Attention to Your Environment
The environments you place yourself into will either be safe or unsafe. A safe environment might be at home with your family surrounded by people who love you and know that you are struggling from an addiction. An unsafe environment might be, for example, a cocaine addict at a Christmas party, where cocaine is being used.
Minimise Contact with Old Friends
If there are old groups of friends you used to hang around with when you were using drugs or alcohol then you should avoid hanging around with these friends while you are at home during the Christmas period. Peer pressure is one of the primary ways that we become embroiled in drink, drugs, or some other addiction. If we cannot trust the people around us to protect us from our addictions, then we should choose to be around different people.
Make Some Space
There are certain family members who will test your patience to the extreme. This is part of being aware of your environment and the contact you have with people. It involves acknowledging the fact that these relatives will drive you to insanity. Once you have acknowledged this fact, you can then start to picture ways that you can manage how you feel about this person in a healthy way. Engage positive coping tactics instead of returning to drugs or alcohol.
Allow Yourself to Slip Up
Even if all the above fails and you find that you are in the middle of a relapse during the festive: this is just a blip. It is nothing more than a misstep on the path of life. There is a huge difference between drinking too much one day and being an alcoholic. If you have been to rehab for alcohol addiction, then you already know that there are multiple steps in between these two. A recovering addict will acknowledge these steps and will not take them. Someone who’s slipping back into addiction from recovery will take those steps. Don’t let a blip become a full blown addiction.
Getting Past the Festive Period
Let’s remember above all else, this is a time of festivities that will pass. Within as little as three weeks from today, you could find that Christmas is come and gone, and New Year is over. You will return to your normal life and to your regular routine. If at any time you find yourself overwhelmed with cravings, remember that those too will pass. And don’t be too hard on yourself. Christmas is difficult for everyone.