Four coping skills to help you in addiction recovery

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If you’ve been through detox and addiction rehab, you may feel like the worst is behind you as you enter into sober living. Saying goodbye to drugs and alcohol isn’t something that is done overnight, however. Many drugs produce long-term effects that exist after initial treatment is over. These cravings can make recovery difficult and often lead to relapse.

It’s for that reason that many individuals in recovery use coping skills, or tools that help them contend with the side effects of drug and alcohol abuse. There are several positive tools that can improve self-esteem, change behavior patterns and reduce the effects of cravings. Here are just a few you can use while sober living in Los Angeles.

1. Delay

If you’ve caught on to the popular Netflix Original Series “The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” you may have heard one of the most popular lines in the show: “You can stand anything for 10 seconds.” It’s how Kimmy survived while in a kidnap situation, and it’s how many addicts survive the intensity of cravings after treatment. The thing about urges and cravings is that they do eventually pass. If you can occupy your mind in other ways and deny the urges, even for just 10 seconds at a time, you can wait them out.

2. Relax

Many individuals use drugs and alcohol as a means to escape and relieve tension. If you’ve finished treatment and are living in a sober home, it’s important to find methods to relieve the same tension in new and constructive ways so it does not build up and lead to relapse. There are a number of different techniques that fall into the range of this coping skill, including taking a walk, meditating and yoga.

3. Be honest

Honesty is one of the best coping skills you can use while recovering in a sober living home. Lies, excuses and hidden agendas lead you closer to relapse, but being honest can help you avoid it. Honesty not only helps you make positive changes in your life but also lets you open up to others that may be able to help you throughout your recovery.

4. Write it down

You may not have kept a journal since you were in junior high, but it can definitely come in handy now. Use blank pages to write out your feelings, identify your triggers and jot down the words you are afraid to say out loud. Even if you don’t share the journal with anyone else, getting it all out can help you avoid relapse.

Coping skills can help improve your recovery chances after addiction treatment and assist you in avoiding relapse. Use these coping skills while living in a safe, stable sober home environment.

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