With many kinds of addiction, people think of recovery as ongoing abstinence from the substance or behavior. If you have a problem with alcohol, being in recovery means not drinking anymore. If you’re recovering from a gambling addiction, it’s about giving up the online poker.
An important tool for individuals in substance abuse recovery is learning to manage high-risk situations (external or internal situations that cause cravings) and its accompanied triggers. Each high-risk situation has one or several potential triggers. From a mind-body bridging perspective a trigger is a specific event or thought that activates a “requirement” (rules of how oneself, others and world should be), and consequently resulting in an overactive “I-System”.
An addiction in the family can take a heavy toll, especially if that family member is your parent. So what can you do if you discover parent (or grandparent) has an addiction? Here are some healthy interactions to try:
To the right of me sat Natalie Portman. To the left of me sat the Crown Prince of Dubai. In front of me stood our Nobel laureate professor. And between them, I sat, holding within me the most infamous personality of all, my borderline personality disorder.
Our lives revolve around our habits; studies show that almost half of our behaviors are habitual rather than intentional. Some, like brushing our teeth or putting on a seat belt in the car, are obviously helpful. Others, like eating or drinking unconsciously, driving aggressively, procrastinating, or spending hours online, can be much more of a problem.
‘Tis the season…to swear that next year will be different.
Everywhere you look, people are reflecting on last year and resolving to break old habits this year. But for all the stocktaking and intention-setting that takes place in January, most people will have fallen far short of their goals by February.
When working with individuals experiencing substance use issues, you will often encounter those who struggle with urges and cravings. Despite a desire to change and taking the initial steps to do so, the person experiences physical, emotional, and cognitive compulsions to use substances, or to use at a level that is not conducive to living a healthy and meaningful life. Urges and cravings are typically experienced as distressing or signs of weakness. Once a person begins to struggle with urges and cravings, those cravings tend to increase in frequency and intensity, which can eventually lead to a lapse back into the substance use cycle.