Avoiding a Relapse: Top 5 Holiday Triggers

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triggers

It’s that time of year again. We have decorations and Christmas songs! There are gifts and Christmas trees mixed with lights and singing kids! For most people, this can be the happiest time of the year. But for those of us suffering from an active addiction, this can be a horrible time of year filled with sorrow and uncertainty. Instead of exchanging gifts and spending time with loved ones, we addicts can be swapping needles and spending time alone in hotel rooms binging on our drugs of choice. How did we get here and how did we go from complete abstinence in our addiction to full blown relapse just because of the ‘time of year”. Let’s take a few moments and go over the top 5 reasons we can fall into full-blown relapse during the holiday season.

1. DEPRESSION/LONELINESS- just because we are now clean and sober, this doesn’t mean that we have completely  rebuilt our “burnt bridges” and repaired all of our relationships to the point where our holiday season is filled with parties and family functions that are full of people and loved ones. We can quickly find ourselves all alone during the holidays, especially on the first couple of holiday seasons after we get clean and sober. So we need to make sure we plan and carefully structure our holiday seasons after we get clean and sober.
2. It is EXTREMELY important that we remind ourselves that just because we decided to get sober and become drug and alcohol free doesn’t mean that everyone close to us has to do the same thing. If we don’t plan carefully, we can find ourselves at holiday parties filled with drugs and alcohol. Remember that those of us who can drink and party responsibly will definitely do so during the holidays.
3. FAMILY HOLIDAY STRESS- Please remember that the holidays can bring on holiday stress. When we get a lot of family members in the same room there is plenty of opportunity for unsettled family matters to rear their ugly heads and cause unwanted family stress during the holiday season.
4. MONEY STRESS-This is a big issue! The holidays bring unwanted money stress. Whether it is stress because money is needed for gifts, bills or traveling, money can put a huge “damper” on the holidays. Remember to budget during the year so that money stress doesn’t become a trigger point during what SHOULD BE the happiest time of year.
5. KEEPING UP WITH THE JONES’- Don’t worry about appearing to be on top of the world to your friends and family members during the holidays. Be proud of where you are in your recovery and talk to others, in all honesty, on where you are in your sobriety. Don’t pretend to be someone you are not. Be yourself and be proud that you are at least sober.
So as you can see there are many factors that can contribute to a holiday relapse if you don’t plan your holidays carefully. Always protect your sobriety at all costs during the holiday season. If you hire a sober coach you need to stay as close to them as you possibly can during the holiday season. If you don’t have a top nationally certified top recovery coach then contact us at The Addictions Coach to get info on hiring one. Our website is http://www.theaddictionscoach.com or you can call us at 1-800-706-0318 to hire a top certified recovery coach for the holiday season.