Recovering from Relapse

LifeSTAR Central Valley Blog

In recovery, change is a process that never unfolds perfectly. As addicts learn the recovery lifestyle, it is essential to also learn how to respond when they fail to maintain sobriety. Depending on the degree of their acting out behavior, this experience is referred to as a slip or a relapse. No matter how it is defined, a person’s response to this kind of setback reveals the strength of their recovery process.

Shame is a normal experience in moments of perceived failure. Self-criticism naturally results from feelings of shame, yet a critical mindset only increases the chances of repeating the behavior (click here to learn more). The body responds to self-criticism by raising cortisol, which is not helpful for those wanting to make changes. On the other hand, a self-compassionate response, increases one’s ability to get back on track quickly. Here is an example of how a person…

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