Commit a certain amount of time to work on it every day.
What pain has drugs or drinking cost you? _________________________________________________________________________________________
What is your motivation for stopping drugs or drinking now?
Have you tried to quit drugs or drinking before? ________
Why did that attempt fail? ___________________________________________________
What new activities will you start this week to replace drugs or drinking?
Write down 2 or 3 clean people you can contact now to try to start “clean” relationships.
Always show appreciation for people’s willingness to hang out with you. If you just quit a serious addiction “normal” people will not be overly exciting for you. It is going to take you a few weeks before you can enjoy nomal life and normal relationships. Focus on having joy for the week and month – not thrills and excitement today.
In this program we will follow several people who are trying to quit to see what they try. – Ty, Sue, Tom, Joy and TJ.
Today Ty threw away and got rid of anything that was drug or alcohal related. Get rid of drug paraphernalia and anything that will tempt you back into drugs or drinking.
Sue is struggling to believe what her new friends at AA are telling her about the destruction booze brings. But she is still paying off that DUI. So she said to herself twice today: drugs and drinking have caused me destruction, they have in the past and they will in the future (unless I quit).
Tom gets bored easily (which leads him right to drugs) so he wrote down what he planned to do today (instead of drugs or drinking). If you use drugs or alcohol for fun you need fun activities to replace drugs or alcohol . If you use drugs or alcohol for excitement you need exciting activities etc.
TJ hit rock bottom so hard that he will do anything to avoid falling back. He printed out the following strategy:
“The Four Ds – a Simple Relapse Prevention Strategy
You can (and should) try to avoid cues and triggers but there’s no way to dodge them all; if you’re in recovery – and you want to stay in recovery – you need to learn to cope with cravings.
Cravings come in waves. They feel like they’ll last forever but if you can endure for 20 minutes or so, they always dissipate into nothingness.
And fortunately, the more often you resist those cravings, the weaker they get and the less frequently they bother you.
If you can hold on for just a few minutes, you can sometimes overcome your cravings. To help you with this, here’s an easy-to-remember coping strategy (The Four Ds) to get you safely past the 20 minute danger zone.
The Four Ds
This is a classic relapse prevention technique. The Ds stand for:
So the next time you feel a craving, remember The Four Ds and avoid a permanent mistake caused by a temporary urge.
Here are 20 solid distraction ideas that will keep you occupied just long enough. Try any or all that make sense to you, or better yet, come up with a list of your own.
You may want to write down a few go-to distraction tasks and keep them on your person (see the example chart at the end of this article). This way you won’t be left scrambling for distraction ideas when already struggling with cravings – you’ll have your ideas planned out and ready to go.
20 Distraction Ideas for Cravings
The next time you feel a craving coming on, take a moment to feel it in your body, and then tell yourself that it’s going to pass if you can just wait it out – and then use one of the 20 methods listed above (or any others you can think of) to distract yourself while you wait for that urge to disappear.
And since the more tools you have at your disposal, the better your odds of success, learn how to urge surf as well – it’s a fantastic mindfulness technique that lets you
glide with attention right over the peak of a craving.
Distraction Ideas – write down 5 that would be good for you: include at least one that forces you into action.
Reasons for Staying Sober/Clean:
Write your own – here are some examples:
“No man or woman is uniformly successful… we must all expect a rather high percentage of failure in the things we attempt.”
Overcoming Addiction Quote by Barnaby Keeney
Don’t be mad at God or at people who can help you. Let somebody love you and be open to their help.
Never forget the #1 rule for quitting drugs or alcohol: Never give up.
Thomas Vilord said “If you have goals and procrastination you have nothing. If you have goals and take action you can have anything that you want.”
I will give you new things to think about and focus on. I will help you develop a dynamic organized system which will give you the weapons you need to fight your addiction.
Tomorrow please find day two which is the eleventh article of the column on the left.
TJ wrote in a notebook what he planned to do based on this session. He determined to do this every day.