What are you planning to do to avoid relapse during the holidays? Remember that old adage we got from the military: if you don’t prepare, then you should prepare to fail! If you can plan your strategy for what you’re going to do during the holidays, then your plan for sobriety can be very successful.
Psychological Preparation to Avoid Relapse is Key
A lot of avoiding relapse starts with what you’re thinking and how you are viewing a situation. If the holidays are usually tough for you because some of your family members have passed on, you might see the upcoming holidays as lonely. If your family always has a lot of arguments during the holidays (most do), then you may see the holiday season as a stressful time instead of a fun time.
Yet, psychologists say that the emotions you approach a situation with are going to be the same emotions you get back from other people, plus more. For example, if you are afraid someone will say ABC, you can bet that the ABC topic is going to crop up sometime during the get-together.
Stay Rooted in The Good Emotions to Avoid Relapse
However, if you can stay planted in sound mental health and sound emotions such as love, joy, generosity, and helpfulness, these are what you’ll get back from other people. Use your good traits and your good side to melt negativity from others.
Here’s a list of some other psychological strategies that have worked for many people over the years.
Commit, Declare and Decree Your Future
Spend an entire 15 minutes today and every day to commit to what it’s going to be like to be sober all during the holidays. Think it through on all levels. Then make repeated declarations and decrees that you will be sober, such as “I will be sober this holiday season.” Say them out loud so your “soul” knows you mean business. The sound of your own voice is a lot more powerful than what you may realize – and when a tempting scenario arises, the same words you said out loud will return to you in your head.
Here are some other declarations and decrees to make:
- All my friends and family will be proud of me when they see I am sober through the whole holiday season and don’t need to go back to drug detox or drug rehab in Colorado.
- I can easily say no to every temptation that arises during the holidays.
- Today is going to be a great day for me and I will receive all the blessings in store for me.
Use Nutrients to Keep You Grounded
Start taking your vitamin and mineral supplements to prepare your body.
Many people don’t realize that a vitamin D, magnesium and calcium deficiency will cause depression – and depressed feelings may be one of your triggers for choosing to do drugs. A B vitamin deficiency can cause someone to feel irritable, take things personally, become anxious, and even to have delusions and hallucinations. You need vitamins and minerals to stay mentally stable.
At the very least, you need a multivitamin and mineral formula that has the minimal amounts needed (called the RDA) of all the vitamins and minerals. The list of these nutrients includes:
- vitamin A • Vitamin B1 • vitamin B5 • calcium
- vitamin D • vitamin B2 • vitamin B12 • magnesium
- vitamin C • vitamin B3 • copper • iron
- vitamin D • vitamin B6 • selenium • manganese
- vitamin K • folic acid • boron • iodine
- biotin • zinc • chromium • phosphorus
- choline • inositol • coenzyme Q10 • omega 3
You’ll feel a lot better once you are taking a good supplement – and feel a lot more mentally stable. This is not an illusion; your mind and brain needs nutrients to function at a high level.
By insuring you are getting enough vitamins and minerals, you decrease the chances that vitamin and mineral deficiencies are going to be the driving force for drug cravings via emotional or physical health issues.
Decide on Which Good People You’ll Hang Out With
Make sure that where you go and who you are around during the holidays will not give rise to any temptations. Some people comment that they thought being around those who aren’t addicted lived life in the slow zone and were boring. This is a clue to you to draw upon your entertainer skills and change the tone of the environment – without using drugs. Can you do it? Put yourself to the test.
Choose Parties Wisely
Make a list of parties you’ll attend. Choose the ones that will help you avoid relapse. You might even make a list of five ways you’ll say no, if the opportunity arises.
Don’t Be Afraid to Say No
Say no to all invitations to any parties where drugs may be present. Don’t think you’re superhuman and the temptation isn’t even a potential issue.
Create Your Own Fun
Decide to throw your own party – alcohol free and drug free – if you don’t have anywhere to go for the holidays.
Help Others in Need
If you have large open blocks of time in your schedule, fill them by helping serve the needy at the food lines at churches or the Salvation Army. Get out there and help the rest of society!
You really can stay sober. Just make a plan with plenty of strategies.