If you really want to Overcome A Drug Or Alcohol Addiction, you must do these 3 things!

If you or a loved one are thinking about getting sober and you want to make sure you stay sober, this video is for you! The number one most important first step for relapse prevention is putting these things in place.

These actionable steps will help provide the foundation for maintaining a good long-term recovery.

I recently had a conversation with a lady on a phone consult. She told me how her husband was having a lot of "change talk." He would say he was ready to take all of these first steps to recovery but always fell short. This happens with so many of the clients I see. It's not that the person doesn't mean it necessarily. You can usually tell when someone is genuine about it. They do want this problem to go away. They want to be better and change their ways, but just wanting it isn't enough. You have to take action steps.

The first and most important action step that you need to take is to do all of the things you can think of that would make it hard, If not impossible to continue the old behavior. You're trying to make it a non-option, or I call it, take it off the table.
The reason why, and don't worry, I'll give you some examples of how to do that. This is so important because if you don't do this, then what you're trying to do is what I call the "cowboy method." You're trying to be tough and think, "I'm just going to live my life, do all the same things, and I'm just not going to use anymore. I'm just going to be strong and use my willpower."

I'm not saying willpower doesn't play a factor because it does. You're going to run out of willpower eventually and have a bad day, and that won't be enough. So take the temptations off the table.

Now that you've got your mindset right. let's make sure that tomorrow is the same thing and the next day it's the same thing.

As you know, this feeling and this motivation that you're feeling right now will ebb and flow. There will be times when you're feeling strong and committed, and there will be times when you're exhausted or don't even care. You have to have a plan for those times.

Now I know you're going to have about 5 million excuses as to why you shouldn't do this next step. Let me go ahead and address a couple of them right now.
Number one excuse why you don't think you should do this-- "it's none of their business." You're, right? But you know what? Your recovery is YOUR business, and you're not doing this for them. You're doing this to help yourself stay clean and sober because you are committed, and this is what YOU want to do.

The second reason you might be telling yourself you don't want to tell them is that you might be thinking, well, what if it doesn't work? Or what if I relapse and I'm not successful. I don't want to get people's hopes up because I've already told them 15 times, and then they get let down. There's some validity in that, but you're thinking about that person. You're doing this for you!

Let the people know your intentions because you and I know that a big part of why you don't want to tell people is that you might change your mind. You don't want to tell them you're not using because what if this whole sobriety thing doesn't work out for you, and you want to go to the bar and drink.

You don't want to leave an escape hatch because, if you do, it's constantly tempting you.

Actionable steps:

Here are a couple of other ways to take it off the table. You could set up an accountability system for yourself.
You could sign up for a recovery monitoring program, a system where you have to log in every day and get randomly pulled for drug or alcohol screens. That creates a ton of accountability.

If you do that, families need to know that they're not giving somebody a drug test to try to catch them. They're giving them these drug tests to prevent them from using.

If the problem that you're struggling with is alcohol, there's a pretty good solution in place that may help you create that accountability. We've been using it in our office for a long time. We are big fans of Soberlink, and Soberlink helps sponsor our YouTube channel.

Soberlink is a portable breathalyzer, a high-tech device helpful for people in recovery.

Here's how it works:

You and your support person would make a schedule and enter it into this digital schedule online. You get a text message when you're supposed to take one of your tests, and you have about an hour window to do it. If you don't take your test, you're late, or you get a positive, you can have it set up where someone else, whoever it is in your support system, will get alert messages that say, "Hey, Johnny missed his test or our Susie got a positive." That is a surefire way to create accountability.

One of the big reasons I love it is because it happens automatically. It doesn't rely on your family member to ask you to take the test, give you a drug test, or hunt you down. It doesn't create an argument because it's something that you and that person decide on ahead of time.

If you're interested in Soberlink or think that might be a good option for you, I'll put the link HERE to learn more about it.

Another thing you can do to help take it off the table for yourself is to turn the light on all the dark sneaky places and ways that, in the past, you used to use. 
Tell whoever is in your support system, your sponsor, your family member, your coach, or your counselor, about the sneaky thoughts that you usually have and the ways you get it.

My guess is this isn't the first time that you've tried to stop, right? You've already done some trial and error, so you know the sneaky ways, the sneaky thoughts, the sneaky places, the not-so-great people. Turn the light on all of that. It makes those sneaky thoughts flee because you've rendered them powerless. After all, they're not in the dark anymore.

When you do this, you're five steps ahead of the addiction.

Amber Hollingsworth

Interested in Recovery To Go? 👉🏻 Recovery ToGo

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