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Home arrow Strategies to Avoid Relapse arrow Strategy Four: Donít Go Back to Old Behavior Patterns

Strategy Four: Donít Go Back to Old Behavior Patterns

While you were using drugs, your day to day activities were those of a drug addict. Face it, you can't continue traveling in the same circles, doing the same things and expect for your life to change the way you want. Here are some of the most obvious no-nos from your past.

You’ve gone to rehab, or you went through counseling or at least you went through the pain and misery of withdrawal and you are determined to not relapse this time.


I understand. I’ve been there. It was a long time ago, true. But it can feel like yesterday if I just look back and really remember what I had to go through.  I went through a lot of change, and change is the watchword here.


You must change almost everything about your life. The routines you have been in that involved drugs or alcohol are reminders of your addiction. Distance yourself from them. Keep the activities that forward your drug-free success and delete those that put you into situations where drinking or drugging are the norm.


Here are a few examples of behavior patterns to avoid.


1.      Do not drink socially

Your ability to resist the pull of drugs will be weakened the instant you take the first sip. Even if alcohol was not your drug of choice, strength to avoid drugs is what must be protected and nurtured from here on out. Eventually it will be easy, but for now, anything which weakens you is your sworn enemy. Don’t drink even a beer.


2.      Don’t waste time on video games and/or television.

 Remember in Strategy 2, it is important for you to stay occupied to keep your attention outward and stay focused on things that are real. Television is one of the biggest thieves of vitality and reality the world has ever seen. What a colossal waste of time. Right next to television are the video games, another ureality. You need reality and actual progress in your life. Now is not the time to be throwing away valuable evenings and days. Get your ass in gear, as my father used to say.  


3.      Be aware of the old habits that included substance abuse.

Many behaviors are associated with drug abuse. These are common place activities for the drug user or alcoholic, but you need to identify them and realize they could just derail your sobriety. Things like stopping by the liquor store on the way home for a pack of smokes, or going over to a friend’s house on Friday nights with whom you used to drink or get stoned are definitely NOT on your list of habits to keep. 


4.      Be industrious, help others and be productive.

When you are working hard and helping others, you feel more in control of life. Production is the basis of morale and you need to keep your morale as high as possible right now, so work like mad to accomplish the things you may have been putting off. Dive into whatever is along the line of your own goals and don’t let up. You will soon be so proud of what you are achieving that the thought of going back to your addicted ways seems unreal.  And that is having an abstinence strategy!



Next in this series: Watch Out For the Drug Pushers in the Media

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