Relapse Prevention Triggers for Mindful Recovery
written by Erica Ives
Identifying triggers to ward off relapse with preventative mindfulness practices.
Do you know what pushes YOUR buttons? Do you know what activates that nerve deep inside you? Makes your heart start racing? Makes you want to crawl back into bed to disconnect, numb, and avoid. Do you know what makes you want to run as quickly as possible? Can you identify YOUR relapse prevention triggers so you can live a mindful recovery?
It is so important to have as much mindfulness to identify YOUR relapse prevention triggers because life will always keep knocking on your door.
Have you ever heard the statement that nothing predicts the future better than the past? Well, if you choose to take a look back, an inventory if you will, of what evokes that strong emotional response or activates those sometimes unruly voices in your head, then that would be just the right place to start. The first goal is to identify YOUR relapse prevention triggers beforehand, so you can create more predictability in an unpredictable world. This will ultimately help prevent a relapse and keep you on a path of mindful recovery.
So what really does a “trigger” mean? Thoughts, feelings, or memories that have some connection to your past, but are occurring in the present, define a trigger. Triggers are very personal and mean different things to different people.
Remember, relapse prevention triggers can be much more than times of high risk, which can include holidays, divorce, death, a move, stress, as well as relationships, marriage, having a child, and aging. A trigger includes your interpretations and responses to all of these events. Anything that threatens abandonment or predictability, provokes feelings of inadequacy, rejection, loneliness, boredom, or fear can translate to a personal trigger. A trigger can activate one or several of your senses including sight, sound, touch, taste, and touch. To be even more specific, a song you hear on the radio, the tone of someone’s voice, the way someone looks at you, or simply a particular time of the day can be triggering.
So, by becoming more MINDFUL of self on all levels, you will be more likely to continually increase your ability to identify YOUR relapse prevention triggers for mindful recovery. Start taking an inventory of your experiences, meaning becoming conscious of people, places, things that evoke a strong emotion, or a thought that makes you suddenly feel uncomfortable, weak, or more fearful than is appropriate to the situation. Have someone you trust help you with this, remember you can be your own worst critic and often need someone who can guide you down the right path. Then you can make the choice to do something beneficial for your recovery instead of choosing the self-destructive behavior.
All my best,
Please visit. ericaives.com to learn more about my background as a professional.