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Relapse Prevention ~ 15 Symptoms Leading to Relapse

People spend a lifetime searching for happiness; looking for peace. They chase idle dreams, addictions, religions, even other people, hoping to fill the emptiness that plagues them. The irony is the only place they ever needed to search was within. Ramona L. Anderson

What are some common symptoms leading to relapse?

1. Exhaustion:

Becoming overly tired - workaholics.


Integrity2. Dishonesty:

Little lies and deceits - making excuses.


3. Impatience:

Things do not happen fast enough - others not doing what they should.


4. Argumentativeness:

Arguing small ridiculous points of view - looking for an excuse to drink, use drugs, gamble, or other (self-soothing) addiction.


5. Depression:

Unreasonable despair - should be talked out.


6. Frustration:

At people and things that may not be going your way.


7. Self-pity:

Why do these things only happen to me? Why am I like I am? (Hint: Even if you do know why you are as you are - it does not change anything. You have to make changes.)


8. Over-Confident:

Thinking you have got-it-made - you no longer fear your addiction - and you take risks getting involved with people, places, and things that you know are high risk.


Success - Failure9. Complacency:

Thinking everything is ok, and "forgetting" about past negative consequences.


10. Expecting too much from others:

"I have changed, why has not everyone else?"


11. Use of other mood altering substances:

Rather than your "drug of choice" or other addiction. (Switching addictions.)


12. Personal expectations set too high:

Setting goals that are unattainable, or that take time and effort to obtain and not willing to be patient and put in the hard work. "Happiness is not having what you want, but wanting what you have."


13. Selective Memory:

Forgetting what you were like when you were using, abusing or deep into your addiction. Learn to be grateful each day, even if the world seems a little less colorful to you - it will get better.


14. Thinking you can have changed.

Real change usually takes time. Granted change starts with making a decision, like not to use any mind-altering substance. However, the saying practice makes perfect is as true today as when it was first said. Little by little, one step at a time, and staying focused on your goals – not your emotions.


15. No rewarding yourself in healthy ways:

Still thinking that substance use is a reward, or something that you deserve. Most people, who have gotten to the point where their substance use could be considered abuse, or that they were or are addicted or dependent, cannot really go back to controlled use. Like it or not, for many it is a fact of life. So, to deal with thinking a drink or using a drug is a good thing – play the tape to the end and remember where it got you, and it started out by using just once. Stop the process before it gets started. Do not take chances, and remind yourself that there are so many better rewards in life when you remain clean and sober!


Homeless in a boxDo not let yourself get too:

  • Hungry

  • Angry

  • Lonely

  • Tired

HALT – relapse before it happens.


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Additional Free Relapse Prevention Worksheets and Information pages

Relapse Prevention ~ Learning to help Yourself


Relapse Prevention ~ Planning for Success


First Relapse Prevention Plan

Relapse Prevention Worksheets and Information pages... in the member's section

SuccessRelapse Prevention ~ Common Factor in Relapse


Relapse Prevention ~ Personality Traits Leading to Relapse


Relapse Prevention ~ 3 - 3 -3 Keeps you Free (Worksheet)


Relapse Prevention ~ If You Relapse (Worksheet)


Relapse Prevention ~ Ten Questions to answer after a Relapse (Worksheet)


Relapse Prevention ~ The "Big" Prevention Plan (8 pages)


Relapse Prevention ~ Theory and Practice


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