When you wish to pursue quitting alcohol or drug abuse, it’s good to have a plan in place that will take you through the process. There is more to giving up alcohol and drugs than merely not putting them in your body. You need a plan that will focus on the causes of your problem. Otherwise, you will revert to old patterns of behavior.
The following is a plan that you can follow:
Commit to Quitting
Whether you are attending a rehab or going it on your own, the first step towards healing is to commit to quitting. You should focus on the reasons that you wish to stop. Knowing this will provide your motivation.
Some possible reasons to quit include:
- The desire to rebuild relationships with your family members
- To improve your health
- To gain control over your behavior
- To be able to work at your job without disturbance
There are two parts to a real commitment. First, you must have the mental resolve to make the commitment. Reviewing the reasons that you wish to quit and deciding to make the attempt. The second part of it is to make a verbal statement of your commitment. Many people need to express in words what their intentions are in the form of something like a pledge or oath.
It’s important to break down your process of quitting into manageable steps. Some people need to wean themselves gradually from the substance that they are abusing to make it through the process. Most rehabs will not allow you to use at all, so you need to do this weaning before you attend the rehab. Sometimes, though, it’s necessary to go through detox itself at a treatment center because of medical issues.
Decide on Treatment and Get Sober
It’s important that medical staff supervise you when you’re trying to quit. Supervision may entail attending a treatment facility. The doctors there can give you the necessary nutrients and medications to support your program. They also will be there for you should you need any medical attention. When your detox is over, the staff will help you plan out your future.
At your home and office, you should throw away all of the alcohol and drugs that you have. You should also avoid people that support your addiction in some way. If you are going to be around them, ask them not to drink or use drugs when they are with you. Avoid parties or gatherings where people will be using alcohol and drugs.
Plan for Cravings
Everyone who quits substance abuse runs into problems with cravings, particularly in the first few months. It’s important to have a plan in place to deal with the needs, so they don’t take you by surprise. Support from family and friends works well to deter you from abusing again. Sometimes, it makes sense to distract yourself from the cravings. Getting involved in work or pursuing a hobby are ways that you can involve yourself in something productive. Something as simple as listening to music may help stem the power of your cravings.
Find a New Meaning in Life
Before and during the process of quitting and even after the initial phase is over, it’s important to make an evaluation of your life. By figuring out what the most important things are to you, you’ll come to see that you cannot achieve them if you’re going to abuse. Sometimes, your list may just contain the things that will make you feel healthy. Eating right and getting enough rest. Other people may want to find something deeper that they can strive to acquire.
Getting the help you need is important for everyone who tries to quit substance abuse. This support comes in many forms. Examples are support groups, family members, friends, and former addicts.
Going to a 12-step program such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous can help you strengthen your commitment to quitting and staying clean and sober. You don’t need to worry about your secrets getting out because everything is confidential.
If you have proclivities towards religion, then you may receive support from your house of worship. This support may come in the form of the teachings of your religion or support groups that your house of worship holds. Reviewing your religious beliefs can give more purpose to your life and a deeper meaning as well.
Outpatient rehab centers are another option for support. At these centers, you’ll find both medical support and advice and counseling or group therapy to help you through difficult times.
Many people believe that gaining the support of other people is crucial to staying off of drugs and alcohol. You will find that there are a lot of sensitive individuals who can help you in your quest for sobriety.