If you are recovering from an addiction, it is very important that you manage your stress in order to avoid relapse. There can be many kinds of triggers that can lead people to start their substance abuse again but stress can play a major role in causing issues with relapse.
Learning tools and strategies to manage stress can help to keep people sober throughout their recovery and for the rest of their lives. Even though relapse may seem like a reality for many people, it is important to do all that you can to prevent yourself from having to go through rehab multiple times.
Studies have shown that avoiding or being better able to manage stress can be the best way to prevent relapse from being an issue in the future.
Using Therapy to Manage Stress
People who don't know how to cope with stress are more likely to be overwhelmed with trying to remain sober and will end up succumbing to their cravings. It is common for people with addictions to really struggle with stress before they receive treatment.
Inability to cope with stress can be one of the many factors that can lead to substance abuse problems. When addicts enter rehab they must take the time to learn and utilize strategies and tools to handle their stress.
Attending individual therapy sessions can be a good way for people in recovery to start gaining important skills in dealing with stress. While many addicts may be accustomed to hiding their feelings or escaping through substance abuse, therapy allows them the chance to start working through their problems head-on.
The ability to work through problems can be a major factor in maintaining your sobriety. People who avoid problems or continue to fall into the habit of trying to escape their feelings often end up relapsing. Instead of running away, addicts must learn to adapt and resolve any issues they are experiencing so that they can stay sober.
Relying a Support Network for Help
During rehab, addicts can learn to manage stress through different tools they learn in individual therapy and group therapy. Speaking openly to a group of peers about your problems can be a good way to reduce stress and learn how to work through things with the help of others.
Addicts have a tendency to isolate themselves and hide their problems from others so that they can continue engaging in their addictive behavior. Once in rehab, people must learn to be more honest with others and openly discuss anything they are going through so that they can receive help and advice from people who are there for them and understand their problems.
In rehab it is important for people to create a support network so that they have an outlet for their stress in the most difficult times. Managing stress can be as simple as talking about it to a close friend or a person in your support group so that you relieve some of the tension and hear someone else's perspective on the situation.
Aside from having a support network and therapists available, people in recovery must learn to manage stress on their own as well. Tools like meditation and deep breathing can be helpful in dealing with tension or stress.
Eating healthy, exercising and being involved in relaxing activities like reading, playing music or making art can all be good coping strategies for dealing with stress. If you don't have the option of going to a meeting or talking to a friend, these types of activities can help lower your stress level and reduce your cravings.
Over time it will become easier to manage stress once you create a routine for yourself that helps you stay relaxed.