For those who are newly sober, the recent events in the world might be causing you an incredible amount of stress. Health professionals have said unhealthy lifestyle choices can put people at a higher risk of developing COVID-19. That means your risk would increase even more if you start using again.
As you know, sobriety is a daily battle, and your ability to continue to fight it can be impacted by the people you surround yourself with. Support groups are especially helpful. Unfortunately, with the continuation of the pandemic, it can be hard to find the help you need.
Here are a few tips that can help you stick to your resolve to beat your addiction.
Make a Plan to Stay Connected With Your Support Network
It’s important to schedule a daily, weekly, and even monthly routine during the pandemic for everyone, but it’s even more important to figure out how you’re going to stay connected to the people in your support network. You should start by making writing down reminders to check in with your sponsor, recovery coach, family and friends.
Make sure to share the schedule with them so they know when you’ll be in contact. That can help hold you accountable, even if it’s just a five-minute conversation with a friend. This is especially important if you live alone.
Look Into and Take Advantage of Online Recovery Support
The recent restrictions have led to many support groups having to cancel meetings, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get help online. Reach out to online recovery support groups that will be willing to help you get through this crisis and your personal crisis as well. There are quite a few virtual groups that you can join remotely.
Look Out for Your Own Triggers but Look Out for New Ones Also
You still need to continue to avoid people and places that would trigger you and make you want to use, but you also need to look out for new triggers as well. For example, if you feel the urge to use while watching a TV show, try to figure out what about that show triggers you.
If the urge persists reach out to someone in your local support network for help. In this time of social distancing, just too much time spent alone can be a trigger.
Establish Routines and Healthy Activities
Routines are extremely important when you are battling an addiction, but especially now. A normal bedtime and wakeup time can help with this, as well as engaging in healthy activities such as working out in your home or walking around the backyard.
Online games, video games, journaling, and reading can help to pass the time as well. In fact, there are many options, such as Zoom, where you can interact with other people to play games, communicate with family, and just be with people instead of being alone during this trying time.
Talk to a Professional
Finally, if you have been unable to stifle the urge to use or have succumbed, it’s time to talk to a professional or check yourself into one of the dual diagnosis treatment centers in your area. If you feel that you can’t do this alone, it’s best to get help from the professionals so you can stay on the road to recovery.
These are just a few of the tips you might need to follow during these troubling times if you’re a recovering addict. This time is hard on everyone and social distancing can make it even harder. Follow the tips above and if they don’t work, please seek help somewhere.