Everyone knows that they should go to meetings and avoid relapse triggers. What if you’re looking for a different kind of advice? Or what if the regular stuff isn’t working for you, so you’re in desperate need of suggestions that will actually stick? If you want something less idealistic and more realistic, here are just a few tips for overcoming addiction in Colorado.
- Eat More Vegetables
Mom was right all along. Not only will the act of food preparation keep you busy and away from bad influences, but eating more vegetables will also help you feel better as a whole. They’re packed with nutrients that will naturally raise your mood, focus, attention and energy levels. They’ll even make you feel fuller and more psychologically satisfied for longer periods of time.
- Go Skydiving
Give your brain something exciting so that it’ll stop bugging you for a fix. It doesn’t have to be skydiving; it can be any fun, adrenaline-pumping activity that gets you out of the house and away from your comfort zone. Only through this natural rush can you enjoy the feeling of a high without actually getting high.
- Replace Your Triggers
It’s a common piece of advice in recovery programs to “avoid your triggers.” But what if they’re all over the neighborhood or inescapable because of school or work? A better plan is to channel your drug-seeking impulses into something else entirely. For example, if a certain street corner always reminds you of scoring, start drinking coffee or blaring music every time that you pass it. Your brain will eventually come to associate the corner with your new behaviors instead of your old ones.
- Record Your Dreams
Dreams are windows into the subconscious, and they can often tell you a lot about the thoughts, feelings and desires that confuse you during the day. For example, if your dreams are anxious ones about drowning, you might not be as in control of your urges as you think. On the other hand, if your dreams are relatively stable, you might be in a good place overall despite the occasional feeling of inadequacy.
- Seek Out Addiction Support
Some programs will have you avoid any thoughts of drugs or alcohol to help you reduce temptation. However, many former addicts report that it’s actually beneficial to face the subject of substance abuse head-on. Whether it’s going to meetings or reading about what’s new in sober news, accepting your post-addiction world can be a big boon to your state of mind.
- Hit the Gym
Endorphins are a natural high that can’t be bought or sold. As a bonus, getting fit will also make you feel just as good as the vegetables do. If you’ve gained or lost a lot of body weight because of your addiction, consider getting your body back on track with regular exercise. Just make sure that you start slow and don’t overdo it, especially in the beginning. Talk to a personal trainer if necessary.
- Carry Inspirational Pictures and Messages
Maybe it’s a motivational quote from a book or movie. Maybe it’s a picture of a dangling kitten that says “hang in there.” No one has to know about these comfort objects but you, so don’t let embarrassment stop you from seeking peace in something that calms you. If you need to, just make them pictures on your smartphone and lock it down with a new passcode.
- Treat Yourself
Give yourself a reward every time that you make it a day without drinking or using drugs. For example, you might buy a box of fancy chocolates and consume one each night that you go to bed clean, or you might let yourself watch one new episode of a good television show. You can also extend these to once-a-week or once-a-month treats once you have a better handle on your addiction. It’s often the little things that keep you going when all of your big dreams falter, so give yourself something to look forward to if you stay on the right path.
These are just a few tips for overcoming your addiction that you might not have read in the usual self-help books. At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you formulate a recovery plan that works for you. Who cares if it’s a little bit different than the usual path? If it helps you say no to drugs, it’s just fine.