Reversing the Process-Recognize Relapse Sypmtoms

Now that I know I’m travelling down the rocky road to relapse, it’s time to get serious about recovery recommitment. This week, I’ll go to three meetings before Wednesday. I met with my sponsor, and I’m about to let him know via phone what’s going on.

Willingness is the difference between relapse and sobriety. It’s the positive quality that powers an engine of recovery, without it, my clean and serene will pitter-patter to a stop on Relapse road.

Serious Relapse Warning Signs

Relapse and isolation

Isolation

I heard one of the best isolation analogies in a 12 step meeting. A lady far wiser than I stated that isolation was like sitting on a warm park bench. It’s nice, initially, until you realize someone else’s rear-end gave the bench its warmth.

That’s exactly what I’ve noticed in my own patterns of isolation. Staring at the television for hours on end, shutting out the world’s social stratosphere, gives me a sense of comfort… for a time. Unfortunately, loneliness is the caboose on isolation’s comfort train. It isn’t long before depression emerges. And that’s when a drink or drug starts to appear mildly attractive.

Internal feelings of discontent, frustration and anger

There are days when that moron mounting my car’s bumper doesn’t bother me. Then there are days when I wish I had a James Bond type vehicle, equipped with machine guns and missiles, to blast that tailgating blowhard off the freeway.

What makes the difference between my zen-Buddhist and road-rage reaction? It’s simple. I’ve probably meditated for at least 15 minutes that morning.

Or maybe work has got me feeling like Milton from Office Space. My boss just stole that ruby red stapler, and my schedule changed for the second time in as many months. I’ll have one of two reactions. First, I might, like Milton, consider burning the place to the ground. Second, I might view adversity as an opportunity to grow. The second, healthy perspective allows me to strengthen spiritual qualities like perseverance and patience in the face of day-to-day challenges.

One reaction highlights my nature as an alcoholic and drug addict. The other demonstrates the principles of recovery in action. Only those spiritual principles supply the necessary foundation for a life free from relapse.