Addiction is destructive. Besides inviting physical complications, addiction wrecks your relationships and psychological wellbeing and may end in suicide. Addiction doesn’t always involve drugs. Sometimes, it’s the obsessive craving for food, video games, gambling, even sex.
Although genetics, social influence, and underlying mental conditions play a role in your addiction, you can quit any behavior. Sadly, breaking the dependency isn’t easy. According to a past Duke University study, habits have a lasting effect on specific brain circuits, forcing you to give in to your cravings. Apart from relapse risks, some people won’t acknowledge their addiction let alone seek treatment. However, you can break any addiction using the following tips.
Create Healthy Relationships
Whether platonic, romantic, or professional, healthy relationships are necessary for personal and social growth. This is especially true for recovering addicts. First off, you need social support to change your lifestyle. Recovery isn’t just about quitting drugs. You have to find other ways to have fun other than feeding your addiction. Assuming your friend loves reading, you can ask to join their book club to stay busy.
Moreover, you need someone to hold you accountable. Since you’re afraid of disappointing them, friends lower the risk of relapsing. Not forgetting your loved ones’ impact on your self-esteem. Because you have people who genuinely care about your recovery, friends build the confidence that drugs destroyed.
Note that not every relationship is healthy. For example, you don’t want a friend who is physically or verbally abusive. Moreover, steer clear of people who disregard your boundaries. Just because someone is helping you recover doesn’t mean they should invade your personal space.
Exercise keeps you busy, so you have less time to fuel your addiction. Workouts also awaken endorphins to soothe your muscles and aid circulation. If you’re feeling low, you can work out to lift your mood instead of chasing happiness in drugs.
Exercise also boosts confidence. By delivering a killer physique, workouts motivate you to fight your addiction by proving you can achieve anything. There’s more to physical activity than going to the gym. You can take morning or evening jogs or do yoga at home.
Some activities don’t even feel like working out. For example, daily chores like cleaning the house and arranging furniture clear your mind while burning extra calories. You could also cycle to the office instead of driving or park far from your workplace and walk the remaining stretch.
Addicts are more susceptible to unhealthy eating habits than their sober counterparts. For starters, drugs deprive you of essential nutrients by suppressing your appetite. Moreover, you eat less since your money goes into financing your addiction instead of buying food. You’re also more likely to overeat as an addict. Crashing from a high invites an insatiable appetite, so you keep eating even after you’re full.
If you must be an addict, let it be to wholesome food. Healthy eating involves consuming the correct quantities of the right nutrients. Food nourishes different body parts during recovery. Take the case of lung problems arising from excessive smoking and lack of exercise. Thanks to their nitrate content, beets relax blood vessels and regulate blood pressure for maximum oxygen uptake.
Likewise, apples reduce inflammation with the flavonoid quercetin and supply antioxidants for lung repair. When it comes to alcohol addiction, sulfur-rich foods like garlic and cauliflower detoxify the liver, while antioxidants like grapefruit and oranges reduce oxidative stress. Don’t ignore hydration. You need water to eliminate toxins, aid digestion, and stabilize heart rate and blood pressure.
Celebrate Small Victories
Although a sober lifestyle is the ultimate goal, small wins are just as important. For starters, the milestones are a reminder to keep going when things seem blurry. Rather than turning to drugs at the slightest disappointment, small victories remind you that you’ve come too far to give in to a moment of weakness.
Your milestones are also an opportunity to celebrate your friends and relatives. Whether it’s your spouse, therapist, or someone in your AA group, you can invite your loved ones to your celebrations to prove you don’t take their efforts for granted. There are several events you can mark during your recovery. The first one is your sober days.
Don’t wait until you’re ten years sober to reward yourself, even being drug-free for one week warrants a celebration. You can also reward yourself when you leave rehab, return to work, or make a new friend. Remember, the celebration doesn’t have to be grand. You could prepare your favorite dish, dance in your living room, or express your gratitude in a journal.
Your recovery journey might be longer than you think. Besides losing friends, you constantly have to deal with boredom and cravings. As such, dedication is necessary to beat an addiction. Don’t hesitate to see a therapist when the situation becomes unmanageable. Did you enjoy the article? Keep it here every week for more informative posts.