Anyone who quits drinking or drugging, no matter who they are or how determined they are, comes to a point in recovery when the cravings to use or drink just seem overwhelming. And a lot of people (when they hit this point) do take a drink, or ten or 50 – For a lot of people, this is the end.
The urge to drink or use drugs can consume us, and when it gets bad, we can think of little else.
It feels like these urges will never end. We doubt we’ll have the strength to fight them for long, and since we feel like we’ll never succeed in the end, we can think of nothing else but using and we feel a craving so strong it’s almost physical – a lot of us just give in to what feels inevitable anyway.
One of the hardest things about overcoming an addiction is dealing with the weight of a lifetime of sobriety.
Forever feels like a long time, and when things are hard, forever feels way too long. And it is for this reason, that there is real truth and strength in the AA mantra of one day at a time. Forget about staying sober for life, juts worry about today. Stay sober for today, and that’s good enough – and the great thing is, add enough of those "today’s" together, and it just gets easier after a while. When relapse threatens, when you’re having a really tough time, and when you’re two seconds away from taking that drink…even staying sober for the rest of the day can seem an impossible goal.
Break it down!
You don’t need to worry about staying sober for the rest of the say – just think about staying sober for the next 10 minutes! Anyone can delay a drink for five minutes.
Distract yourself, make yourself a sandwich, walk around the block once, do ANYTHING BUT DRINK.
Urges, even the strongest of urges, are transitory things, and they will pass. There may be another one coming down the pipes, but deal with it when it comes, just as you dealt with the last.
If you can wait 10 minutes, you will find that more often than not, the urge subsides, and things seem a little less crazy. Things get easier in time, and we all go through a rough patch every now and again. Don’t worry about tomorrow; think only of the here and now.
It seems too easy, but it works!