Stress is a part of everyday life, but when you are recovering from an addiction, stress can be a factor that can threaten your continued recovery. Learning to deal with stress is an important part of the therapy process. This process must be continued and refined, even after a treatment program has been completed.
Here a few of the techniques you can utilize when stress threatens to drive you off your path to recovery:
1 – Take A Walk
Sometimes, just walking away from a stressful situation can give you the breathing space you need to readjust your emotions and begin handling it in a more reasonable way. Whenever you are under stress, make sure you are getting regular exercise, which helps to release calming brain chemicals that will make the stress more manageable.
2 – Take A Mental Stress Break
Often, stress from a particular problem or situation is so overwhelming that people will think about it day and night. It becomes an ever-present problem to be solved. This type of obsessive thinking is a sign of severe stressors that can cause people to eat poorly or relapse into drinking or drug use.
Experts suggest taking a complete mental break from the problem or issue, putting it completely out of mind and focusing on more positive activities. Have a day of fun with friends. Engage in a favorite hobby. Watch a popular video series. Completely forget the problem for a period of time. You will then be able to return to it with a relaxed state of mind that can put the problem into a manageable form.
3 – Connect with Others
Some relationships can be a stressor, but relationships can also give people a welcome relief from intensity and tension. Cultivate a circle of healthy connections with family members and friends who will allow you to express your feelings honestly and who can give active support. These interactions can often provide a fresh perspective, a laugh or just an understanding hand on the shoulder that will relieve stress and make you feel better able to tackle a problem.
4 – Watch Your Diet
Stress can be a temptation to indulge in fatty, sugary foods that provide an instant lift for emotions. However, these foods also cause blood sugar to crash and can quickly add extra pounds. Eating nourishing foods like vegetables, whole grains, fruits and nuts will help to feed your body and maintain healthy nerve cells so that you can weather the stress more easily. Keep busy to divert your impulse to binge on junk food.
5 – Get Professional Help
If other measures are not providing sufficient relief from stress, don’t be afraid to reach out for professional help. A counselor can often provide a more objective viewpoint to help you understand the source of the stress a little better. He or she can also provide practice advice and support for dealing with stress so that you can feel in better control.
Stressors can have a negative impact on both your physical and mental health. Learn to recognize the early signs of stress when they occur and apply a remedy that will help to get you back into balance.
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