We all have times in sobriety when staying sober feels much harder than we want it to. When temptation starts taking over our mind and our body, we can take action to make sure we don’t take another drink or a drug.
Check In With Yourself
When we’re feeling the sensation of temptation, it can be hard to be honest with ourselves. It isn’t because we are incapable of being honest with ourselves or that we are necessarily self-deceptive. Our difficulty in honestly taking an inventory of our personal state comes from the way longterm abuse of drugs and alcohol has changed our brain chemistry. Instead of be honest about the fact that we are having thoughts about relapsing, our addicted brain would prefer we keep quiet, plan an escape route, and build up the distress necessary to trigger the intense need for satisfying a rush of pleasure as a means of coping. Being completely honest with ourselves about our state of mind gets easier the longer way stay sober. However, if our temptation is strong, it can be just even more challenging to break through the barrier of the addicted mind.
Check In With Someone Else
Sometimes what we cannot say out loud to ourselves, we can say out loud to someone else. We know this to be true as men of recovery. Alone, we couldn’t get ourselves to quit drinking or using drugs. Once we reached out for help and entered a community of other men seeking recovery, we found the strength we needed. We know that others understand and can give us the direction we need- all we have to do is reach out and open our mouths.
Do Something Physical
Temptation is an energy of craving, which is often the result of our fight or flight response system kicking in. Survival instincts in the body are hormonal; specifically, our body produces stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol to pout our system into action. Rather than let stagnant energy fester into problematic thinking, we can put the high-drive energy into action by working out, playing a sport, stretching our body, or engaging in some kind of physical activity.
Keep Yourself Busy
Denial, distraction, and avoidance actually do come in handy in recovery, especially during times of great temptation to relapse. If the best thing we do during the day is stay sober and otherwise just keep ourselves busy however we can, we’ve accomplished something phenomenal.
Tree House Recovery of Portland, Oregon is a men’s addiction treatment center that teaches our clients how to roll with life’s punches and use the tools they’ve learned throughout the treatment process to stay on top of anything life throws at them. Call (503) 850-2474 to see how we can help you today.