Five Common Challenges in Early Recovery

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Five Common Challenges in Early Recovery
Stopping substance use
often means that activities you did for fun and the people with whom you did them must be avoided.
You have decided to
stop using, but others in your house may still be using.
Small events can create
feelings of anger that seem to preoccupy your thoughts and can lead to relapse.
Friends and
who use
Parties, dinners, business meetings, and holidays without substance use can be difficult.
You want to continue associations with old friends or friends who use.
Source: U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. Counselor's Treatment Manual: Matrix Intensive Outpatient Treatment for People With Stimulant Use Disorders, 2007
in the home
Try to make new friends at 12-Step or mutual-help meetings.
Participate in new activities or hobbies that will increase your chances of meeting abstinent people.
Plan activities with abstinent friends or family members.
Remind yourself that recovery involves a healing of brain chemistry. Strong, unpredictable emotions are a natural part of recovery.
Engage in exercise.
Talk to a counselor or a supportive friend.
Get rid of all drugs and alcohol.
Ask others to refrain from using and drinking at home.
If you continue to have a problem, think about moving out for a while.
Put new activities in your schedule.
Go back to activities you enjoyed before your addiction took over.
Develop new friends at 12-Step or mutual-help meetings.
Have a plan for answering questions about not using substances.
Start your own abstinent celebrations and traditions.
Have your own transportation to and from events.
Leave if you get uncomfortable or start feeling deprived.
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