Overcoming addiction is a difficult process. It requires self-discipline, determination, and motivation. It doesn’t matter what your addiction is; whether it’s to alcohol, drugs, tobacco, sex, gambling, or even lying, it’s hard to break patterns we’ve grown accustomed to. However, admitting you have a problem is the first step on the road to recovery.
On that note, if you’re ready to make a change, but don’t know where to start, here are 9 effective tips you can take to overcome your addiction.
1. List The Effects of Addiction
Firstly, write a list of your addiction’s negative effects because this will help you stay motivated once you have quit. You’ll want to be reminded of all the stress, trauma, agitation, and affected relationships due to your addiction. Describe what made you start this habit and how it deteriorated your physical and mental health. If it has caused depression or anxiety, make sure you don’t leave that out.
2. Think About Why You Want to Quit
Consider why you want to quit. Are you looking to retain a sense of freedom? Do you feel trapped by your addiction? Does it cost you too much money? Do you want to improve your overall health? Whatever your reasons are, keep them in mind throughout the process.
3. Focus on The Life You Seek
You always want to have your long-term and short-term goals are written out so that you can refer back to them on tough days. Focus on the immediate changes you will experience after quitting and then think about the long-term impacts these will have on your life and well-being.
4. Devise a Plan
It’s vital that you devise a plan rather than winging it because you’ll want to prepare for any and all changes that arise. So, decide when you’ll quit, how you’ll quit, and what implementations will make this transition period easier.
5. Set a Day to Quit
It’s good to set a day to quit so that you can slowly wean yourself off. Perhaps you’ll choose a date that’s significant to you and slowly try to cut down on your addictive habits on the days and weeks leading up to your quitting date. Either way, giving yourself time beforehand will help you come to terms with the change, so by the time the day arrives, you’ll be ready to say goodbye.
6. Seek Help and Support
You must first alert the loved ones of your decision so that they can form a support structure. They will be your rock and create the emotional support you need to be surrounded with as you progress, so it is important to inform them before seeking professional help.
The Alberta, Canada-based medical professionals at this facility suggest you consider a medically supervised detox to start; this is a great way to wean yourself off your addiction and ease yourself into a program. Many addiction victims tend to feel overwhelmed by the thought of seeking medical treatment, and the fear can trigger a relapse. It’ll be easier for the patient to adapt to a smooth transition, especially if they are prone to seizures, agitation, or other conditions due to their addictions.
7. Start Decreasing the Use of Your Addictive Habit
As mentioned above, decreasing your use of the addictive habit will help you when the quitting date comes around. Moreover, these little accomplishments leading up to the day act as motivation to help you see that you can and are indeed making positive changes, so it won’t feel as bad as you initially thought it would be.
8. Upgrade Your Environment
You must consider the ways you’ll improve your surroundings to aid in your recovery. Upgrade your environment by removing anything in your house that reminds you of your habits. For instance, if you are overcoming alcohol addiction, make sure there’s no alcohol in the house.
9. Change Your Lifestyle
The last habit to break is the lifestyle you are used to. You’ll want to be prepared for settings that might provoke your habits to creep back up. However, you’ll also want to avoid triggers, so reduce your stress and keep busy. Fill your time with activities that enhance and encourage your new lifestyle, like exercising.
It’s important to bear in mind that you will experience triggers as you begin the process. It’s not going to be easy to change patterns of behavior, especially addictive behaviors. However, with the right emotional and social support groups around you, you will be reminded of the positive effects of the changes you’ve made. Hang in there because you’ll quickly see improvements soon after you quit.