No one is perfect. If you have a relapse during your recovery, don't ever think you are the only one. While both men and women are at risk for a relapse when situations get stressful, women are more likely to take the situation to heart. Women, especially those in management positions, fear relapsing so much that they eventually trip themselves up. Once you have a relapse, you are able to put that fear to rest and start to take the first steps of your recovery journey for the second time.
Learn From the Experience
Coming back after a relapse offers many lessons, especially for women who are struggling to find their place. One of the most important is that you are only human. We all have shortcomings. If you relapse, it's important to understand why you relapsed. This may not be easy for you to figure out on your own. Counseling and some hard soul-searching will help you find the answers. A relapse may even make you appreciate how you feel being sober. There are many lessons you can learn from a relapse. You just need to be aware and be mindful of yourself, your feelings, and the world around you.
Learn Your Triggers
A "trigger" can be anything that puts you in the mindset to relapse and start using again. For women, especially those in the business world, the stress and frustration of constantly competing against others can become triggers. One thing a relapse will help you determine is what your triggers are. Once you know what they are, you can start to learn new ways to avoid them. For many, that may be extremely difficult, but if you are serious about your recovery, this should be one of your primary priorities. Identifying, understanding, and then minimizing your triggers must always be in your mindset. When you feel as if you are being triggered, you can begin to take the necessary steps to avoid relapsing.
It's Up to You
Women need to be accountable for their relapses. They need to own them. It's fine to be upset with yourself. The key to overcoming the feeling of failure is to remember that your recovery is your own personal journey. Yes, you failed, but if you want to succeed, you need to pick yourself up and start over. You only truly fail when you stop fighting to succeed. Once you have made the decision to succeed, the rest is up to you. While your friends and family can walk with you, the steps you take must be your own. Own each step, even if it happens to be a step backward. There are lessons for you to learn and things you need to be focusing on.
Get Angry or Cry
Women need to be understand that it's okay to be upset. Get angry. Cry, shout, and stomp your feet. Don't keep your feelings pent up inside. Talk to your counselor. Let them know how you feel and start to work through your feelings of anger and frustration. Talking about how you feel about your relapse will help you release the tension you feel. Releasing your anger and just letting out the tears can actually minimize your risk of relapsing a second time. You already know how important your recovery journey is. The anger you feel about jeopardizing your future can be used to fuel your motivation to stay the course and keep moving forward.
Avoid Trying to Help Yourself
In most cases, women are their own worst critics. Many times, we feel like we can take care of the situation on our own. The only problem with that way of thinking is we are the ones that got ourselves in this situation to begin with. When it comes to a relapse, that was of our own doing as well. With those things being said, trying to work things out on our own is not the best solution. Instead, talk to one of your friends. Visit a counselor. Connect with a member of your support group. Seek out the help you need. Reach out to the staff of your old rehab center and ask for resources to assist you during your recovery.
Look for Signs of Hope
Hope is something every woman needs if she wants to move forward and achieve her goals of sobriety and good health. Like beauty, sometimes finding hope is in the eye of the beholder. One person may find their home in the newness of a morning sunrise, while another person's hope may come from the laughter of a child. Hope can take as many forms as you need. Take the time to look around you. You can find hope in almost any situation or circumstance. Finding your hope won't erase your relapse but it will give you a new lease on life and will help you to maybe see things from a new perspective. Take those things and build on them. Hope makes a great foundation to build on.
Have Faith in Yourself
Along with hope, you will often find faith. Women sometimes need to look internally to nurture the faith they have in themselves to move forward. After facing your relapse and rebuilding your recovery strategy, have faith in yourself that you will be able to move forward on your recovery journey. Your faith can strengthen your resolve and allow you to move forward toward your goals of sobriety and recovery. Working with your counselors, you may be able to restore the faith you lost when you had your relapse. Taking the time to evaluate your situation and what caused the relapse to occur will give you the insight to take control of the situation and make lifestyle changes that are both powerful and positive.
Coming back after a relapse, you need to reassess your situation and learn the valuable lessons the experience offers. Rebuilding your faith in yourself and learning to identify and minimize your triggers are essential parts of your recovery. Take the time you need to reset your way of thinking and seek out assistance from friends, family, and counselors. A relapse is not the end. It's a new beginning that allows you to speak from experience. At the Ho Tai Way, staff members understand how frustrating a relapse can be. As a woman, you need the support and guidance that will help you restore your feelings of self-worth and value. Call today and find out what resources you have at your disposal. The Ho Tai Way is a gender specific program focusing on treating women.