7 Key Coping Skills for Substance Abuse Recovery

If you are among the ones who are struggling with addiction, you must learn coping skills for substance abuse recovery. Let's have a look at some coping strategies and recovery skills that will help you overcome addiction and prevent substance abuse.

recovery skills, Substance Abuse Recovery
Key Coping Skills for Substance Abuse Recovery

How to Overcome an Addiction: Seven Coping Skills for Substance Abuse

Addiction recovery is often exhausting, frustrating, overwhelming, stressful, and lonely. The good news is that you can learn some skills to make rehabilitation more positive and fulfilling. Fortunately, most of these skills can even be acquired while enrolled in a drug rehab center.

In the case of addiction, being in rehab doesn't necessarily guarantee that you'll remain sober. Approximately 40%-60% of people who have lived with addiction will experience a relapse at some point and find themselves back at the beginning. 

Therefore, even if you attend rehab regularly, there is no guarantee that you'll never relapse or remain sober. The only way of ensuring recovery is by staying steadfast and strong with a will to resume your normal life soon.

Everybody who lived through addiction has a story to tell. Many admit to having gone to rehab multiple times and openly admit to relapsing. 

Therefore, your struggle to stay sober isn't in vain, and neither is theirs. Knowing how triggers can lead to relapse and how to cope with them can help you prevent becoming another statistic.

Making changes to your habits, restarting your life, and restructuring it isn't easy. However, developing coping skills can make a recovery from addiction and the healing process less challenging while preventing relapse. 

Read Here: The Psychology Behind Addiction: Symptoms, Causes, and Complications

Let's now discuss 7 key coping skills that will help you during the recovery phase.  

1. Identifying the Triggers

The first and foremost step on the road to addiction recovery is identifying the triggering forces that lure you to addiction. 

Reputable rehab centers like the Palm Beach Institute emphasize that triggers can be emotional, social, or environmental effects that stir a person's memories of past addictions. 

Triggers can result in an urge leading to relapse and external or internal. An example of a stimulus is a person, place, or smell that evokes the memory of previous negative behavior. 

Ultimately, it may lead to an unhealthy way of coping.

Other than emotional triggers, sometimes the environment, company, or places can even trigger an episode of relapse. 

Read Here: Psychological Addiction of Dopamine –Is High Dopamine Good?

2. Being honest with yourself is important

Honesty is something that cannot be emphasized enough. When you're feeling anxious or depressed, talk about it, accept it, and own it. 

Trying to ignore your emotions can make them worse. Being honest with yourself can help you recognize that we are all only human.

You will inevitably encounter things that upset you throughout the day. In this situation, you need to acknowledge your feelings and move on.

3. Put yourself in a supportive environment

Maintaining a support system throughout the recovery process is crucial. The journey never ends. For maintaining sobriety long term, it is essential to have healthy relationships with people who understand the needs of those in recovery. 

Besides friends and family, people trying to stay away from drugs and alcohol also form a network. Finding a system of trustworthy individuals helps in times of temptation.

Read Here: How are Depression and Alcohol Addiction Related?

4. No matter what the situation, learn to relax

Stress relief and relaxation are two of the most common reasons people start using drugs and alcohol. You won't need to depend on drugs or alcohol to calm yourself if you manage anxiety and tensions on your own. 

Start by learning techniques to stay centered in any situation by using cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy. 

Therefore, you may find it easier to maintain long-term sobriety and cope with addiction challenges by reducing stress. A few methods include:

  • Deep, slow breathing
  • Taking a walk
  • Spending time outdoors and enjoying nature
  • Laughter
  • Playing music
  • Warm baths
  • Fitness/Yoga
  • Green or herbal tea
  • Enjoy reading
  • Write down what makes you happy or make a list of them
Read Here: Expert Tips to Manage Stress at Workplace

5. Keep yourself busy

Before quitting drugs or alcohol, you probably spent a lot of time finding, purchasing, and abusing your substance of choice. 

As you work to recover from addiction, you must replace your old habits with new ones. So do what you've been putting off. 

Start by learning new skills, taking a language class, or going on a vacation. Be more active by dancing, reading, writing, or hiking. 

Your schedule should be filled with positive activities to boost your mood and maintain your emotional wellbeing.

Read Here: Health is Wealth: How can You Maintain Your Health?

6. Exercise and eat right to stay healthy

Taking care of your body is the best thing you can do. You should eat nutrient-rich, healthy foods because they impact your mental health. 

Malnutrition can lead to addiction because the body doesn't get what it needs. Keep yourself hydrated every day.

You will also feel good after exercising because it releases endorphins in your brain. Having a routine also helps you stay sober, as it gives your day structure. You can maintain your sobriety further by exercising and eating healthily.

Read Here: How to Stay Motivated to Exercise Regularly: 15 Workout Motivation Tips

7. Be of assistance to others

As you become stronger and more resilient, you can help others who struggle with substance use. Assisting others boosts your self-esteem, making it easier to avoid substance use and relapse. 

Knowing you can do great things reduces high blood pressure, eases anxiety, and relieves depression, as well as warding off chronic pains like headaches and migraines. 

You'll gain a great deal of satisfaction after helping others beat their addictions. 

Final Words!

Lastly, we must acknowledge that the road to recovery isn't an easy one, and relapses can occur; it's natural. 

But the key is not to take such minor failures to heart or fall prey to addiction once again. If you stay persistent and strong-willed, you can defeat it, so keep trying.

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