Substance abuse prevention is different for the recovering addict than it is for someone with no history of drug and alcohol abuse. Attempting to tackle the problem as if your addiction had never existed in the first place is a destructive form of denial and an illogical thought process around which to develop a substance abuse prevention program. No matter how much you’d care to deny it, the fact remains that once you have succumbed to an addiction to drugs or alcohol, you must learn to now replace the addictive behavior rather than avoid it.
Confront what you’re avoiding
There are reasons that you turned to drugs or alcohol in the first place—it could be to numb the pain experienced in childhood, to feel more confident, or to eliminate stress. In the beginning, what became your addiction was a better option than a particular feeling you were trying to avoid. The process of developing a substance abuse prevention plan starts with identifying the issues you are trying to avoid and dealing with them head-on.
This may require seeking therapy for past trauma, building confidence from within, or finding new ways to navigate through stress. Removing drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism without replacing them with a healthier alternative is a high-risk plan for substance abuse prevention. When those uncomfortable situations arise—and they will—you must have an alternative to the crutch you’ve depended on for so long.
It is entirely possible to remove your addiction from your life without replacing it with a more positive alternative. This is certainly a more difficult route for maintaining sobriety. Mark Houston, founder of the Benchmark Recovery Center (formerly the Mark Houston Recovery Center), was sober for 9 years and desperately miserable with his life before he learned how to fill the emptiness once filled by alcohol and developed his own personal substance abuse prevention plan. Through an arduous process of trial and error, he learned how to enjoy the richness of life again and has helped countless others achieve this for themselves in the years since.
Learn lessons from the past
In a sense, if you’re a recovering addict, you have an advantage over someone who has never fallen victim to an addiction. You already know which emotions are so uncomfortable that you would rather self-destruct than confront them. When you are ready to explore these emotions, you can also discover the triggers that unleash these emotions and begin with a solid foundation upon which you can build your substance abuse prevention plan.
It’s not easy to confront the things that caused you to turn to drugs and alcohol in the first place but it is absolutely possible if you have the resolve to change. Developing and sticking with a lifetime plan for substance abuse prevention isn’t supposed to be simple. You will need to challenge yourself to come out victorious.
Substance abuse prevention requires you to take action
If you have tried a drug addiction treatment center but have relapsed, the Benchmark Recovery Center is the next logical step in achieving a life of permanent sobriety. Throughout our minimum 90-day substance abuse recovery program, you’ll lay the foundation of your own personal prevention program designed to see you through a lifetime of permanent sobriety. Take a few moments to browse throughout our website and discovery how our program is different from what you may have experienced in the past and then contact us right away at 866-905-4550 when you are ready to reclaim your life.