Managing Recovery and Cravings during COVID-19
Social isolation is tough and now during this pandemic, it’s become almost mandatory. You can’t go to your normal support groups. You can’t attend your counseling or doctor’s appointment. You can’t see your sponsor or friend. What you can do is choose how you respond to your substance urges.
Whether this is day one is your recovery or day 4,647, the world around us is causing additional stress and that’s difficult. Try these steps to help you through an urge to use.
Surf the Wave
There is a wonderful therapy called Dialectal and Behavior Therapy (DBT). One of the skills in DBT is called Urge Surfing. Here is how it works: close your eyes, picture yourself on a surfboard riding that wave until it slowly pushes you to the beach. Like waves, urges slowly build to a cresting point and then fall. At the cresting point, we feel if we do not give into the urge, it will last forever. Guess what, physically that urge only lasts 90 seconds in your body.
Do something for 90 seconds
Re-assess the urge
Once the urge has passed, write down your victory.
Make sure to give yourself some grace and compassion. You are fighting hard and this is not easy. You don’t control your thoughts or urges but you do control your response. You can do this, and you are doing the very best you can.
The Everett Clinic Behavioral Health Department is here for you. Behavioral Health (talk therapy) video visits are open to new patients with most commercial insurance. Please visit online or call 425-339-5453 for more information and to schedule an appointment.
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