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A Good Replacement for Alcohol in Recovery

The biggest fear you might have about giving up alcohol is how you are going to enjoy life without it. Since becoming addicted to alcohol, your life has probably been revolving around it, and even when you are not drinking it, you probably devote a great deal of time to thinking about it or recovering from the effects of your last session. When you stop drinking, it can feel as if there is this huge hole left in your life and, unless you are able to fill it, you are going to be at high risk of relapse.

The Importance of Replacing Alcohol in Recovery

At the end of your addiction problems, you might be happy just for the pain to stop. This type of motivation can be very powerful, but it is not going to be enough to keep you sober long term. The reality is that once a few months have passed, you are likely to forget how bad it was and may even begin questioning whether you even had a problem with alcohol. It is this inability to remember the pain of addiction that accounts for many people relapsing.

The fear of pain is only going to get you so far in recovery, meaning that you need to develop a better motivation for staying sober; in other words, you need to find a replacement for alcohol that is going to make staying sober attractive in its own right. It is crucial that you find this replacement because otherwise you are going to be at high risk of relapse or turning to new maladaptive behaviours.

The Wrong Replacements for Alcohol in Recovery

A common reason why people fall into alcohol addiction is they are trying to escape the challenges of life. Substance abuse does not make it easier to deal with these challenges, but it does provide a way for you to hide from them. When you become sober, you can still carry with you this desire to escape life. Even if you manage to stay free of alcohol, you could still turn to new maladaptive behaviour in order to replace the addiction.

The maladaptive behaviours you might turn to in recovery are sometimes referred to as addiction substitutes. These include such things like shopping addiction, workaholism, exercise addiction, binge eating, internet addiction, or relationship addiction. In the beginning, these behaviours can seem less harmful than alcoholism, but they have the potential to cause almost as much destruction in your life.

Finding Effective Coping Strategies in Recovery

You have been using alcohol to help you cope with life, so if you don’t manage to find an effective replacement, you are going to either relapse or turn to addiction substitutes. One of the benefits of choosing an addiction rehab programme is that this is going to give you a great opportunity to pick up some coping tools that are going to work for you. The great thing about these strategies is they actually allow you to deal with life rather than having to keep running away all the time.

There are thousands of different coping strategies to choose from and the trick is finding the ones that are going to work for you. The process of collecting these strategies is sometimes compared with trying to fill up a toolbox with tools; the more effective tools you have in your coping toolbox, the easier it is going to be for you to deal with life. Eventually you reach a stage where you have so many tools in your toolbox that you feel able to cope with anything, so by this stage of your recovery you can expect to enjoy a great deal of serenity in your life.

How to Find Happiness without Alcohol

When you are caught up in alcoholism, it can be almost impossible to imagine how you could possibly survive without it. You may be convinced that life in recovery is going to be incredibly dull and that you are never going to be happy again. The truth is that any happiness you have experienced as an alcoholic is a dull reflection of the real thing; alcohol does not make you happy because it actually numbs you to the ability to feel this emotion. This means that it is only after you have become sober you can begin to experience happiness again.

Happiness is not only possible in recovery; it is the main reason why you should choose to give up alcohol. By taking this step, you are going to be opening the door to many more opportunities in life, getting the chance to begin achieving your dreams. You can get to enjoy a level of happiness that you have never experience previously, one that is not going to be dependent on you drinking alcohol.

You have been tricked into living without happiness for too long because alcohol has made you numb to it. When you become sober, you are going to have the opportunity to find real happiness.

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