Perhaps at times you will be confused about the rightness of your decision. It can happen. But don’t lose confidence in yourself. If you really believe you can stop drinking or take it seriously – YOU CAN DO IT. Try not to doubt the correctness and durability of your decision. What can help you with this?
It is important not to forget about the consequences of your alcohol or drug abuse and the problems your addiction has brought you to. List all the consequences of your drinking, remember your worst hangover, write down all the consequences of your drinking that you are most ashamed of, that hurt you the most, that you know you would like never to happen again in your life
But also don’t forget about the benefits you get from abstinence. Appreciate that you sleep better, do not wake up with a “hangover”, you are not hungry, that you do not have to be ashamed of anything or be afraid of anyone. Remember how much your family and friends appreciate your sobriety (if there are no such people around you, be your best friend. Appreciate your enormous effort). As you wrote down all the consequences of your drinking, write down and keep adding to that list all the benefits you get from not drinking now. You can also share your past successes with a therapeutic group or addiction therapist.
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If you have doubts about your decision, never be alone with the doubts! Share your moments of doubt, say you have a hard time in a therapy group, or a friend of a sobering alcoholic or drug addict, or maybe a former gambler, etc. (see point 3 – Strong Support for Your Sobriety) Remember. It’s not a shame to admit it’s hard for you.
List all the reasons why you decided to abstain. Place it on your desk, hang it over your bed, etc.
Do not be discouraged, do not give up, if you have had a relapse – you have failed. But also, do not underestimate these events. If you have broken abstinence – ask for help – IMMEDIATELY go and talk to your therapist, tell about what happened. Together with the therapist you will analyze what led to drinking. Your therapist will help you develop the best strategy to stop drinking and get back on track. Do not let your one-time breakdown be the beginning of another sequence, another fall into the abyss. It can still be stopped!
REWARD YOURSELF FOR NOT DRINKING, NOT TAKING THAT YOU HAVE STOPPED GAMING.
Making the decision to stop the abuse, sticking to that decision, is a remarkable achievement. Appreciate your courage, your determination, your effort. Don’t forget to “remind yourself” that it is good to please yourself.
Recalculate the money you drank or lost so far, and now you have saved thanks to the fact that you do not drink, do not take drugs or play. It may turn out that even on a weekly basis it is quite a considerable amount. You can use this money for a gift for yourself, something fun, something that you will enjoy.
Reward yourself every week. Each week when you are sober, eat your favorite snack, ice cream, meal in a restaurant, etc. Do what you like and which is not a threat to your abstinence.
Mark each sober day in the calendar. Tell yourself that every time your 30 sober days pass, you will do something special for yourself. Regardless of whether it will be a trip to the mountains, going to the cinema, watching your favorite movie, etc.
Stay busy and active
Boredom combined with loneliness is a hellishly dangerous mixture for a sobering person. If you spend long hours alone and idle, there is a high risk that you will use the “old proven” ways of dealing with these situations, such as alcohol or drugs. If, on the other hand, you fill your time with activities that you like, love, that engage your attention and time, there is a much lower risk that the idea for a drink will come to your mind. Here are some ideas that you can put into practice.
Take care of your diet. For balanced meals. Eat regularly. Nutritionists suggest that it is better to eat less and more often than less often and risk the stomach being empty for a long time and asking for its own. First, it’s unhealthy for everyone, not just the alcoholic. Second, for the alcoholic, irregular meals, long periods of time when the stomach remains empty, poses a high risk of a desire to satisfy, or rather deceive, an alcoholic craving.
Engage in physical activity. It does not have to be, and in the beginning it should not even be, an effort of a competitive or quasi-competitive nature.
And finally – a few important remarks!
In addition to professional therapy, with which you should start your journey to sobriety, there are also self-help groups that are also helpful in maintaining abstinence. Alcoholics Anonymous is over 80 years old and with its help thousands of people regained and maintained their sobriety. AA groups are widely available, even in small towns and some villages. Systematic participation in the meetings of such a group may be beneficial for you, it will provide you with additional support. There you will meet people in the same situation as you, people who you will be sure not to laugh at, but there is a great probability that they will understand your problems. Perhaps after a few meetings you will find that AA is not for you, but then take care of another source of support – a therapeutic group, abstinence club, make sure that your support system is good and effective enough to help you stay sober even without to use AA assistance
In the first sentences of this article, we mentioned how important it is to make a conscious decision to change your life, to try to live it sober. We remind you of the importance of this decision once again. A Chinese proverb says – “Every journey, even the longest, begins with the first step.” This could be the most important step in your life. Remember: if your abstinence is not based on this well-thought-out decision to live in sobriety, also the good and proven methods proposed by us will not be effective. They won’t work. We believe in you. Good luck!