Learn More On How To Stay Sober
Our staff at Baton Rouge Behavioral Hospital is here to provide you with the support you need for long-term recovery. We offer safe detox, counseling, group therapy, and mental health help to help you learn how to become sober and stay sober.
If you are interested in learning more on alternatives to drinking and using in your recovery process, please give us a call at or fill out our confidential contact form today.
Contact our Admissions staff at 300-8470 to discuss our treatment programs or reach out online.
Introducing: The Intentional Spender
In The Intentional Spender, youll learn insider secrets on how to conquer your impulse spending for good. As a former shopaholic, I know all too well how emotions can easily influence your spending.
Studies show that is takes 21 days to form a habit. Thats why Ive put together this 21-day program to help you form and implement healthy spending habits. This includes shopping with intention, living within your means while still having fun, and feeling comfortable and confident with your personal style.
I dont believe in depriving yourself or living on a bare bones budget! I believe that you are 100% capable of transforming your mindset by discovering the root cause behind your spending habit and developing a game-plan that actually works
One of my favorite ways to prevent impulse buys is to use a Shopping Wishlist. This helps me to pause and think before making a purchase instead of letting my emotions hijack my wallet. I normally sell this in the Mint Notion Shop, but today you can grab your FREE printable below! Cheers!
Controlling Behavior After An Addiction
Even if your goal was to quit completely, you may decide at some point in the future that you want to be able to occasionally indulge without doing so excessively. This is possible, but it is important to be very clear about what it is you want to do.
For example, if you want to be able to have an occasional drink with friends, then you need to be able to have one drink and then stop.
Many drinkers find it easier to stay completely abstinent than to drink occasionally. If you intend to have one drink and end up having several, you should reassess your goals and what is achievable for you at this time of your life. This might be a new experience for you, and it could be liberating. It could also seem boring and difficult.
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Replace Your Old Habits With New Similar Ones
Finding something similar to your bad habit can help you easily replace it. If you only have the choice to give into your habit or stay at an equilibrium, your habit will likely influence your choosing. If you have two choices, one new choice and one old choice, you have a better chance at picking the new choice that will help you form a positive habit since it puts you at an elevated level compared to where you were before.
For example, when someone who uses drugs feel stressed, they are more inclined to use the drugs than to not use the drugs and deal with stress on their own. Using the drugs puts them at a higher point than before but not using keeps them at the same stressful level. Instead, if you have the option to use drugs or go for a walk to get rid of stress you might pick going for a walk since the walk will likely de-stress your mind and body and put you at a better state than before.
If you drink alcohol when going out with friends and want to get sober, try a new non-alcoholic drink. You will still enjoy having something in your hand and tasting a good drink , but this time it wont be giving into your bad habit. As you start to replace your bad choices with better choices, you will likely reach for the better choice first, without even contemplating it!
What Can I Do Instead Of Shopping
There are many different reasons why some people love to shop, such as they consider it a hobby, they are bored or sad and shop to boost their mood, they are trying to fill a void in their life through shopping, they shop for their fantasy self, or they use shopping as a coping mechaism to escape from life.
Its important to find healthier activites to distract yourself that dont involve spending money. Below are some of my favorite things to do instead of shopping:
- Go for a nature walk
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Tips For Recovering Addicts To Rebuild Relationships
The perfect time to start rebuilding relationships with family and friends is in treatment. Making the commitment to get well means making important changes in all aspects of your life. These tips can help you to improve your personal relationships.
- Reach Out to Those People You Want to Reconnect With
The first step in mending fences is to extend the proverbial olive branch. If you are not sure how a former acquaintance will receive a phone call, or you want some time to consider what you would like to say, send an e-mail or a letter. Tell the person you are in treatment or have completed treatment for your addiction, as the case may be. Let them know you are in the process of getting your life back on track and that you would like them to be part of it.
- Be Honest and Direct About What You Want
The people who knew you when you were using no doubt got used to you denying that you had an addiction or trying to use them in some way. When you communicate with them now, your communication is going to be direct and clear. Apologize for what has happened between you in the past and ask for forgiveness.
- Dont Beat Yourself Up Over Past Events
Once you have asked for forgiveness over past events, draw a line under them. You dont have the power to change anything that has already taken place. You can move forward from this point, though, and make better decisions in your relationships from now on.
- Make a Point of Initiating Contact With Family and Friends
- Be Patient
Prepare Ahead Of Time For Challenging Evenings
If relearning how to live life without alcohol was easy, wed have done it already. The fact is, there will be nights you struggle with unease and discomfort. The following are common in individuals newly learning how to spend evenings alcohol-free:
- Anxiety and/or depression
- Difficulty falling asleep
- Feeling excluded from nightlife activities that revolved around drinking
An added trap is the phenomena of the pink cloud. This is a period early in getting sober when the brain and spirit, freshly freed from the depressive effects of alcohol, feel like a million bucks, all brand-new and excited about life again. Because its a temporary phase, it can set up a false expectation for the recovering individual that life is permanently great forever now. It secretly blindsides them to the challenges they might face when they do find themselves bored or depressed one night.
Its important to set up defense mechanisms now for the potential future so that if you encounter these triggers, you arent negotiating them for the first time while suffering acutely from the challenge. An anxious or depressed mind may be weaker than a happy mind, so plan ahead on good days for challenging evenings.
Here are a few examples of ways that you can prepare for these evenings and cope with triggers:
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A New Obsession: Replacing Addiction With A Healthy New Goal
Alcoholism and drug addictions involve an obsession with getting and drinking or using. When those with a substance use disorder go through detox and rehab, they should be coming out the other side with goals for a whole new life a life without drugs. Its a quality-of-life issue thats central to a long-term recovery.1
Alternatives To Drinking And Using
The alternatives to drinking and using will help you to learn how to stay sober while still having fun in social situations. These alternatives are meant to help you to feel good and achieve muscle relaxation without actually introducing substances that cause addiction.
Below is an outline of some of the many alternatives to alcohol and drug use. Be sure to practice these tips with a sober buddy, sponsor, or mentor to help you achieve your long-term recovery goals.
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Time To Assimilate These Concepts
Did you gain value from this article? Is it important that you know and understand this topic? Would you like to optimize how you think about this topic? Would you like a method for applying these ideas to your life?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then Im confident you will gain tremendous value from using the accompanying IQ Matrix for coaching or self-coaching purposes. This mind map provides you with a quick visual overview of the article you just read. The branches, interlinking ideas, and images model how the brain thinks and processes information. Its kind of like implanting a thought into your brain an upgrade of sorts that optimizes how you think about these concepts and ideas.
Anyone Who Has Been Lost In An Addiction Knows The Feeling Of Losing Interest In Life
Addiction takes away a passion for living. Things that you once enjoyed get tossed aside as addiction consumes your thoughts and actions. Once you begin recovery, you find that you have more hours of the day to work with to create a meaningful life. In fact, finding meaning and joy in life is essential to recovery. So, where do you begin?
Get moving One of the best things to do in early recovery is get some physical exercise. Try different things until you find your niche. Any type of movement is healthy. Getting your body moving helps to clear the mind and bring you back to center. Try activities such as walking, hiking, running, aerobics, yoga, biking, swimming, or joining an exercise class. Not only does exercise build back the muscle tone, but it also makes us feel better because it releases endorphins in our brain.
Music Listening to music you enjoy is relaxing and enriching. Finding tunes that you enjoyed way back before your addiction began is especially rewarding. Music can bring back memories of better times, before your life was filled with the pain of addiction. Because music is so powerful, youll want to avoid music that triggers cravings or sparks memories of your addiction.
In addiction, you lost your sense of purpose. Finding that purpose and rekindling your passions leads to a rewarding life.
If you are looking to turn your life around and discover the possibilities in sobriety, contact Twin Lakes Recovery Center at 958-0778.
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Bad Habits In Addiction
Identifying the bad habits within your active addiction is the first step in changing them for the better. Typically, addiction arises as a coping mechanism, so when something bad happens it is important to recognize how you are feeling, why, and the actions you engage in because of it. Here are some common bad habits that people with substance use disorder often engage in:
The Difference Between Partying And Addiction
First, its important to note that not everybody who parties struggles with addiction, and sometimes it can be hard to tell the difference between just having fun and experiencing substance abuse issues.
Here are some questions you can ask yourself to evaluate if you might be addicted to drugs and/or alcohol:
- Do I use drugs and alcohol to escape from emotional pain or mental health issues?
- Do I feel symptoms of withdrawal when Im not using or drinking?
- Have I made dangerous or harmful decisions while under the influence of drugs or alcohol but continued to use?
- Does substance abuse run in my family?
- Do I find myself losing control over how much Im drinking or using ?
- Has my drinking or drug use negatively affected my social relationships?
- Do I often question whether or not I might have a problem with addiction?
After answering these questions, you might find that you are, in fact, struggling with addiction. While recovery might feel frightening, know that there is a treatment option out there that will work for your specific struggles.
Once you find your path toward recovery, you can begin to learn tips and tricks on how to stay sober and turn to alternatives to drinking and using when you are in social situations that trigger substance abuse urges.
What To Do If Your Spouse Has A Cross Addiction
So what should you do if you think your spouse has a cross addiction? Encourage them to stay connected with their recovery. Maybe they have a regular sobriety meeting, and you can help make it easier for them to attend by offering to watch the kids or take care of dinner. Bring up your concern in a non-aggressive manner and suggest they discuss it further with someone in their sober community. For more information on how to approach your spouse about addiction click here.
Even if they have decades of sobriety, encourage your partner to seek professional counseling if the problem is out of control. Remember that any type of addiction is best dealt with in a professional behavioral health setting. Let your spouse know that they shouldnt be ashamed to go back to rehab, if needed. A residential treatment center can address the underlying issues that are causing a cross addiction to evolve.
At Transformations Care, we are experts in all types of addictions, including negative behavioral addictions. Remember, addiction is almost always fueled by another mental health condition. We can give your loved one the tools they need to address any addiction, while teaching them how to recognize and diminish a cross addiction in the future.
Develop Healthy And Nurturing Habits
Instead of focusing all your energy on trying to overcome your addiction, why not concentrate on other aspects of your life?
Focus on developing healthy and nurturing daily habits. For instance incorporate exercise, meditation, healthy eating, reading, visualization, the practice of mindfulness, and yoga into your daily routine.
These healthy and nurturing habits will, of course, take several weeks if not months to establish. You may in fact not even feel any different in the short-term. However, incorporating these habits into your life is a long-term play.
Each one of the healthy habits you choose to adopt into your life changes you slightly. It gets you thinking about your life, yourself and your circumstances a little differently. Over time, as you continue to develop these healthy habits they eventually snowball, and that is when you start building momentum in a brand new direction.
Changes, of course, wont happen overnight. However, they will happen gradually over time. Each habit introduces slight changes into your life. As a result, you start thinking different thoughts, believing different things and experiencing new emotions. They may even help you connect with new people who have different ideas leading to new perspectives and insights. And before you know it, your addictions have faded away because they are no longer a priority in your life.
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Consider Sports And Active Hobbies
Not everyone is built for sports or active hobbies and many people simply dont have the physical health to engage in them. If this applies to you, feel free to disregard this advice. However, physical activities such as sports, running, swimming, etc., are extremely good choices as hobbies for persons recovering from addiction. Physical activity helps you to stimulate dopamine and serotonin production in the brain, helps to improve oxygen and blood flow through the body, and will boost energy. Each of these factors will help you to improve your physical and mental health, will help you to stay happy, and will help you to fight cravings.
Sports like yoga and martial arts are often very beneficial, simply because they contain elements of mindfulness and mental health. However, any activity will be beneficial, providing you can have fun, get yourself moving, and hopefully participate with others when taking part.
To Kick Addiction Replace It With Joy
Illustration: Maja Moden
People in the midst of alcohol or drug addiction tend to imagine life without those substances as one of deprivation, which can make kicking the habit seem like a joyless and dreary prospect. But recovery has at least as much to do with rewarding oneself as it does with depriving oneself, a UCLA expert in addiction treatment asserts.
People with the most success in staying sober tend to get involved in a range of pleasurable activities and do them frequently, says Suzette Glasner-Edwards, PhD, adjunct associate professor at the and author of The Addiction Recovery Skills Workbook . These activities can replace the time and energy that they had been spending on addictive behaviors, enabling them to experience pleasure without the devastating consequences of alcohol or drug use.
Patients are encouraged to rate how good or how miserable they expect the new experience will be on a 10-point scale and then, after the activity, to rate how fun it actually proved to be. More often than not, an activity is more fun than you thought it was going to be, she says, adding that seeing the pattern play out repeatedly can break down peoples resistance to pursuing future fun activities. Just like the rewarding feelings that follow the use of drugs or alcohol in the early stages lead to forming a damaging habit, rewarding healthy behaviors can establish positive habits, Dr. Glasner-Edwards says.
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