A Relapse Can Be A Devastating Experience
Recovering from a Relapse – After you have been working a program of recovery in your life for some time, a relapse can be a devastating experience. It makes you feel like a complete failure as a human being, which can cause you to want to call yourself a few bad names and beat yourself up pretty badly. The thing is, relapse can and does happen. The fact is, unfortunately, that MOST people who commit to walk a road of recovery relapse more than once in their attempt to find a new way to live.
Here is some sound advice you can take to heart if you ever find yourself recovering from a relapse:
- Don’t beat yourself up. This is easier said than done, of course. Your first instinct will be to want to shame and guilt yourself for going back to your old addictive behavior. However; it is important that you keep in mind that this does absolutely no good. It only serves to make you feel worse about your situation than you already do. This can potentially drive you deeper into the relapse to mask your negative feelings. You are not a failure. You are a human being who makes mistakes.
- Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and try again. Remember – change isn’t easy. Learning how to live a lifestyle that is free from addiction can be quite challenging. You may have to fall down a few times before you learn to walk a straight line in recovery. It’s okay! Just make the decision that you are going to get up and try again. The failure is not in the relapse. The failure is in staying in the relapse.
- Learn from your choices. Relapse is always a choice – we are never forced to return to our old behavior. We make the conscious decision to use drugs, gamble, smoke cigarettes, or watch porn again. We give into the compulsion. What can you learn from this relapse that will help you in the future? What can you do to make sure it doesn’t happen again? Use this as a learning opportunity and a chance for growth.
- Get honest with your support system immediately. One of the worst things you can do after you relapse is to keep it a secret. It is important that you are accountable to the people who care about you so that you can get through this difficult time. Keeping them in the dark will always be to your detriment.
- Engage in a healing practice to cleanse your spirit – whether it’s through prayer, meditation, or yoga. Returning back to old behavior can weigh tremendously on your spirit. Be sure to turn to whatever spiritual practices you rely on to get re-centered and reoriented to a place of wellness.
Recovering From A Relapse
The most important thing you can do if you relapse is to get back into recovery right away. The longer you stay in your addictive behavior, the easier it will be to continue it. Jump back into healthy activities that will make you feel good about yourself as soon as you can.
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