From going on a diet, trying to quit smoking or being in rehab for drugs or alcohol, we have all faced cravings of some sort in our lifetime. Anything can trigger them and the problem with addictions is that they want to return and cravings are therefore one of the hardest things to deal with.
Cravings only last for 15 minutes on average which means that if you can distract yourself, chances are that it will soon pass. Try to remind yourself of this the next time you have one and use some of the highly effective tips below to get through it.
* Do something else immediately. Whether it’s making a phone call, preparing some food, having a shower, doing some cleaning or putting on the television - no matter how small it is, the distraction will help.
* Temporarily relocate - go for a walk or visit a friend - removing yourself from your environment can help clear the mind.
* Make sure that you have someone you can talk to in an event like this. It may be a friend, family or sponsor who has agreed to be there for you when you’re feeling weak.
* Thought-changing techniques are a great way of distracting the mind as well. For example, try to recite your favourite song from memory or count the number of DVDs on your shelf.
* Try to work out what causes these cravings in the first place. Is it an actual craving or are you upset about something, have you had an argument with someone or are you simply just bored?
* Carry an inspiration card with you at all times. Whether it can fit into your pocket, your purse or wallet, make sure it’s always to hand. On the card you can write anything from a quote that inspires you to stay clean, a person you are doing this for or even a photo of what you were like at your lowest point. Whenever a craving hits you can pull this out to remind yourself why you’re doing this in the first place.
If you are battling an addiction of any kind and would like some help or advice, please don’t hesitate to contact Life Works in the strictest of confidence and we will be more than happy to help.