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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Don’t Let Nostalgia Harm Your Recovery

Especially during the holiday season, it’s pretty easy to start feeling nostalgia – or wistfully longing for a return to past times or places. 

While summoning loving memories of family and friends is helpful – and it may even give you that added push to get through some tough days – reminiscing about partying or bar hopping is a slippery slope to relapse. 

This is partly because nostalgia can cause you to romanticize your addiction – and forget about those embarrassing moments, destructive relationships, sick feelings, damaged friendships and/or emotional wounds that also came with drinking or drugging. And this can work on the mind to tempt you back to addiction.

  • Be selective about your nostalgia. Make a conscious choice to let go of any memories that can be harmful to your hard-won recovery. For example, be sure to keep any favorite bar tunes off of your playlist.  
  • Keep a journal. And be sure to detail all of the negative aspects of addiction a well as all of the positives of recovery. 
  • Focus on your sober life. Remind yourself daily why you choose to commit to sobriety and dwell on the exciting and new experiences, people, and activities you now have thanks to your recovery.
  • Take time to make new memories. This is the perfect time to put all of your efforts into the present – do extra recovery work, repair past relationships, form new friendships with peers, and create new sober memories. You’ll be too busy to be nostalgic for the past. 
Aftercare for Lifetime Sobriety
Aftercare plans are invaluable additions to your addiction recovery toolbox. At The Haven at Pismo, our team of addiction specialists will help you to develop relapse strategies to help identify triggers and maintain sobriety once returning home. Call us today: 805-202-3440.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Surviving the Holidays With Disordered Eating

The holidays can be extra challenging if you’re recovering from a dual diagnosis of addiction and disordered eating. After all, ’tis the season for high-fat, calorie-laden, sugary foods – and they seems to be everywhere. This can certainly cause stress and anxiety – and even the urge to return to destructive habits like overeating, purging, or restricting calories. 

It may take a little thought and preparation, but you can enjoy the holidays and stay on the path toward healthful eating and sobriety. Start by following these helpful do's and don'ts adopted from the National Eating Disorder Association. 

  • Devise a holiday game plan. Together with your healthcare provider you can predict and prep for any overwhelming situations or harmful behaviors. 
  • Count your blessings. The holiday season is a time to enjoy family and friends and give back, so try to focus on your heart instead of your hips.
  • Line up support. Alert one or two friends that you may need them to provide extra support this season – and then don’t hesitate to reach out when you’re in need. 

  • Skip meals. Instead, maintain a regular and moderate eating pattern, even if you feel like you overindulged.
  • Overcommit. You don’t have to attend every holiday event, especially if it will lead to more stress and less self-care. Consider turning down an invitation to spend time on self-reflection or relaxation. 
  • Be too rigid or hard on yourself. A little flexibility can go a long way in helping you enjoy the season without excess worry about what or how much you eat. Plus, you deserve a holiday from self-imposed criticism and rigidity. 

Seeking Support at Haven
The Haven at Pismo provides a continuum of care for clients with co-occurring chemical dependency and mental illnesses like disordered eating. To learn more, call 805-202-3440.