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How Do I Manage Triggers?

How Do I Manage Triggers?

Feeling triggered and having cravings for substances can be one of the most challenging experiences in early recovery. You can and you will get through them with a few easy tips.

Compare Your Time Sober To Your Time Using

If you are new in recovery, the amount of time you’ve lived sober is relatively small when compared to the amount of time you were actively abusing drugs and alcohol. Even with one or two years of continuous sobriety under your belt, that amount of time may not compare to the many years or even decades you struggled with substance abuse. You’re just a beginner. You’re learning. You are unlearning and relearning and learning brand new for the first time. Your brain, your body, and every part of your life is changing and adapting to an entire new way of living. Give yourself a break and realize that triggers are part of the process. Triggers are the most overwhelming in the early phases of recovery when you are still sensitive to your sensory input. One day, triggers won’t bother you anymore. You’ll walk through them without issue. For now, you are growing and healing. Give yourself time.

Remember This Too Shall Pass

Everything can feel like an eternity in early recovery. Your brain isn’t used to experiencing negative feelings which create sensations of discomfort. As a result, it feels like the pain will never end, the triggers will never stop, and you’ll never be comfortable in recovery. Catastrophic feeling is also a symptom of both addiction as well as recovery. Just remember that this too shall pass. The trigger will pass. The adrenaline running through your veins because your evolutionary fight or flight system is activated will tire out. You’ll feel better in just a short amount of time. This too shall pass.

Call A Friend

Few people can understand experiencing addiction triggers like fellow recoverees. Reach out to your community or your support network and talk it out. Describe everything you’re going through, every thought you’re having, no matter how rational or irrational you think they are. Keep talking until you can’t talk anymore. Talk it out until the trigger passes, you realize it was just a temporary moment, and you feel better. Talking about it won’t kill you, but relapsing over it can.

Take A Moment To Breathe

Breathing is scientific. Taking a moment to breathe is scientifically proven to activate your parasympathetic nervous system, thereby counteracting your sympathetic nervous system. As soon as you pause and take a deep breath, you are reversing the effect of the trigger happening in your brain. Keep breathing until you feel your muscles relax and the noises in your head start to calm down. You’ve got this. You’re going to make it through.

Treatment should be more than a program. When you joined Anchored Recovery, you join a community of individuals committed to sobriety. Our full continuum of care can help you seamlessly transition from detox through every phase of treatment you need to ensure lifelong sobriety. Call us today for information: 800.848.6168

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