Planning ahead will help avoid a return to substance use.
The path to recovery is not a straight line. Individuals in recovery will encounter challenges throughout their journey including events that change their regular routine and present multitude of triggers. When facing these obstacles, it is important to have a plan, or tool kit, ready to prevent possible return to substance use. Keep these “tools” with you at all times, whether it’s a list in your phone or a small notebook you can carry with you or another means you find convenient.
Here are a few things to include in your recovery kit.
- Write a letter to yourself: Grab some paper and a pencil to write with, or type something up in your phone that reminds you why you started this journey. It is important to remember why recovery was the right choice and why using again is not a great idea. Looking back on the progress you have made and including messages of encouragement for yourself is also helpful.
- Carry photos of loved ones: Always have photos of your loved ones with you, whether they are digital or in print. Anytime you feel the need, pull out these photos as a reminder of who you are staying sober for in your life.
- Find a 12-step meeting in the area to attend: Be aware of support groups or 12-step meetings in the area, even if traveling out of town. This way, if the thought of relapsing occurs, you know where to go to find extra support.
- Have a list of support people to call: Having a list of people who are reliable, trustworthy, and supportive of your recovery is essential. Call these people anytime you find yourself wanting to use again.
- Find a hobby or activity to distract yourself: There are several activities and hobbies to use as a distraction from possible relapse. Some examples include drawing, journaling, taking a long walk or hike, gardening, riding a bike, cooking, doing a puzzle, listening to music, and more.
- Wear a meaningful piece of jewelry or accessory: If you have a ring, bracelet, necklace, or other accessory that has personal meaning, wear that accessory as a reminder of why recovery is important.
- Carry a journal with important messages: Whether you have an actual journal to write in, or you use your phone, having a place to keep important message is a good idea. These messages can be inspirational quotes or things you tell yourself to prevent relapse.
- Stop into your nearest BrightView or give us a call: At BrightView, we welcome everyone. If you are close to one of our centers, please stop in and talk to us or give us a call. Our staff is here to support you throughout your recovery.
Experiencing bumps in the road during your recovery journey is inevitable. However, a plan and tool kit will help you avoid a possible return to use when challenges arise.
BrightView wants to help anyone who is being affected by substance use disorder. If you or a loved one is struggling with their recovery or substance use disorder, please give us a call at (833)-510-HELP. We are here whenever help is needed.