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"One drink was too many, and a thousand was never enough."

 

"If you don't want to get drunk, don't drink!"

Once we get clean and sober we often find that many of our old patterns of daily living aren't good for our recoveries or well-being. The places we use to hang out to socialize, drink, and use drugs are now the most dangerous places we can go if we want to maintain our abstinence. A common slogan heard at meetings is "If you don't want to slip, stay out of slippery places!" The safest way to deal with places like bars and taverns is to stay away from them. Some have tried to continue socializing in their old familiar haunts by drinking soda water, pop, or coffee, but this is doomed to failure. It's best to learn new ways to socialize and to work at building new clean and sober friendships. Twelve Step meetings are an excellent way to achieve this. There are times however, that a recovering person may not be able to avoid a slippery place. Perhaps a business engagement or a family gathering where wine is served. It helps if we spend some time and thought identifying those places and situations beforehand and figure out exactly how we plan to handle those situations from now on. Remember, recovering people ALWAYS have the right to say NO THANKS to offers of a drink (or drug). No one is obligated to pick up and use just because a drink, pill, pipe, or line, is placed in front of them. By setting recovery as our first priority we are taking the best possible care of ourselves.

click here to bring up a printable form

Identifying slippery places and situations who can hurt my recovery
 Situations and places that are dangerous for my recovery:
  1. ___________________________________________________
  2. ___________________________________________________
  3. ___________________________________________________
  4. ___________________________________________________
  5. ___________________________________________________

 How will I cope with each of the above situations:

  1. ___________________________________________________
  2. ___________________________________________________
  3. ___________________________________________________
  4. ___________________________________________________
  5. ___________________________________________________

 

Relapses don't just happen. They are a series of events, feelings, behaviors, and thoughts that precede the actual act of taking that first drink or drug. Identifying these events, feelings, behaviors and thoughts helps us stop the process long before it leads to an actual lapse or relapse.

click here to bring up a printable form

Check off any of these warning signs that might apply to you.

__ Bored most of the time
__ Avoiding problems
__ Problems sleeping
__ Missing meetings and aftercare
__ Blaming other people
__ Dreaming of the "good old days"
__ Visiting taverns and bars
__ Being uncommunicative
__ Not taking action
__ Keeping a stash just in case
__ Thinking, I can handle it on my own
__ Dwelling on mistakes
__ holding onto resentments
__ Keeping secrets
__ Lying about activities
__ Hanging out with drug using friends
__ Thinking you are cured
__ Quitting therapy
__ Missing appointments
__ Stopping medications
__ Getting to hungry
__ Excess Anger
__ Staying to lonely
__ Being to tired
__ Quit reading recovery literature
__ Worrying too much about the future

Additional warning signs


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In recovery, many of us find we have a lot of time to fill. Before recovery, drinking and using had been a big part of our lives.  Empty time and boredom are major relapse factors. We need to identify and participate in new activities that promote our recovery. Since we can't be in meetings all the time it helps to list constructive things to do with our free time.

click here to bring up a printable form

 Make a list of things to do that are enjoyable and healthy.
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________
  • ___________________________________________

Back to Relapse Prevention



Preventing Relapse Main Page
A few common tools that sustain recovery and help in times of crisis are:
Journaling our progress in recovery
Meetings, attending DRA and other 12 Step support meetings
The telephone, reaching out
Prayer and meditation  seeking guidance

Reading recovery books and literature

A plan of action, a written list of things to do when sudden cravings strike or symptoms increase
  Additional forms and lists that can help us to build a personal relapse prevention plan
Relaxation techniques
Service work, helping others
The Steps, the basis of our recovery
Talking to sponsors, caring advisors, and recovering friends
Recovery slogans
First Things First  
This Too Shall Pass  
One Day At A Time  
Easy Does It  
H.A.L.T.  
Keep It Simple  
Live And Let Live  
The Serenity Prayer
Today I will do one thing
More Slogans 
 

   

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P.O. Box 8107, Prairie Village, Kansas, 66208
Toll Free 1-877-883-2332


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