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Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Any tips or advice to prevent a relapse, alternatively any of your stories about your own relapses.
Lil13
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Lil13 » 17 Sep 2010 15:17

Hey Eddy and Zelda. Thanks for the post. If you gave me 280 days sober in the next 300 I would bite your arm off. I have done 11 in the last 13 and I am so proud of myself. That is 11 more than any time in the last year or longer. This feels like a good deal to me for now. :D Lil
AF 2011. #32

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Bela
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Bela » 21 Sep 2010 11:23

Scrunch, it's hard no doubt.
You know you need to start over. . . . so what say,take a deep breath, gird the loins, and just do it!
We are here to support you. How about it???? <:)> Bela
Whatever works.

Cravings stop going where they aren't fed.

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zarajenkin
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by zarajenkin » 21 Sep 2010 11:32

Sending you masses of support Scrunch. <:)> <:)> <:)>

I know that feeling but I also know 100 percent that you CAN do this.

Zara x

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tee
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by tee » 21 Sep 2010 15:15

Hi Scrunch, have you tried rereading your first posts to crank the motivation up a notch? You can do this my lovely <:)> how's the puppy doing? :)
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

zelda

Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by zelda » 21 Sep 2010 21:18

Hey Scrunchie,
when I was drinking last week, I decided I just didnt have it in me to do this. However, I also knew that I didnt have the choice really as drinking would take all i love away from me. So, without wanting to I didnt drink the first night, and by the third night I had got some OOmph back. Day seven today and already feeling alot stronger and determined. It is the sobriety that will give you the strength, so if you cannot find the motivation, look at it like having a rest for a couple of days, and I promise you that the motivation will come back all by itself.
It is such a bore in the beginning and nothing seems worth it. But just decide that you can stand boredom for a couple of days, bordom with yourself and boredom with life, and then a little bit of a smile will come as your face gets bored of being miserable.

It is nice when your face gets bored. It makes yer brain jump into the competition, and you are up and rolling again. xxxx <:)>

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Ed
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Ed » 21 Sep 2010 22:13

one thing ive learnt is that its very hard to be consistent in life..or for life to be consistent with us. in fact that the two go together. if life were kind enough to be consistent with us then maybe we could in turn find it within ourselves to sustain some consistency. But life isnt like that and we are not like that and i for one couldnt be one of those people who' freaks out when a complex routine is disrupted. i think i would like to promise myself never to drink again. In may i had my bike stolen because i left it outside a shop when i had been drinking to go in a get some booze having had a sorrowful month of april and i promised myself never to drink again because i was devastated. I lasted over a month, drank once and then again a few days later and then again a week later and decided again in july not to drink again as i wasnt feeling too great - stress from my job and life in general. So i stopped, did over two and a half months and then drank two bottles of red last sunday. I havent drunk since, dont feel the desire to drink. im seemingly lucky or educated or aware enough or vigilant enough to be able to knock it on the head after one blow out. i was drinking virtually every day for a few years up to april 08. so whats changed? where am i now? why cant i stop for ever? i dont think this is a chemical addiction issue as it was. at one point i was fairly sure that alcohol is like tobacco but now im not so sure. if i smoked tomorrow within a couple of weeks id be on 20 a day but im fairly confident i wont drink now for a couple of weeks, 3 weeks, a month..im not sure. maybe i will drink at christmas. god knows. it takes a lot of effort to never drink. it really does as we all here know. ive been up and down these challenges quite alot. the few times ive drunk in the last 4 months havent been very enjoyable ultimately. i dont have a very good off switch which means that a good time turns into something more maudlin and a horrendous hangover. i think it does get easier not to drink, you get more weapons in your psychological armoury. but if you havent got to a position where you can virtually guarentee to yourself that you wont drink - which must take a long time - then permanent sobriety always seems like a very difficult goal.
Enough time wasted on this.

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silvergirl
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by silvergirl » 21 Sep 2010 23:19

nice post dwarde.

i think that i would probably class one of my drinking situations in the past year as enjoyable. but on sober reflection i'd trade having that one "enjoyable" moment, if i could delete all the not enjoyable ones too. that might not make sense, it's late and me brain isn't ticking over as well as i'd like. in a nutshell, i think that i'd rather be sober than walk the tightrope of doom, and risk teetering over the brink of oblivion every time. it's maybe not as wild a life but it's a preferable one. for now anyway, i'm imagining that i'll eventually come up against some pretty strong desires, and when i do, being here is going to be helpful to break that cycle. i hope.

anyway. c'mon team bright eye!

sgx
you can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.
~jon kabat-zinn

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Maddie
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Maddie » 23 Sep 2010 18:47

Brilliant Scrunch. :D So does that mean you're going to have a sober evening?

Maddie X
“Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it's better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.”

Marilyn Monroe

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Maddie
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Maddie » 23 Sep 2010 19:12

That's brilliant scrunch. I hope you're proud of yourself because you should be. Well done!!!! :D

Maddie X
“Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it's better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.”

Marilyn Monroe

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tee
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by tee » 24 Sep 2010 16:57

That goes from me too Wendy, well done you <:)> How's it going today?
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

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tee
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by tee » 24 Sep 2010 17:32

Grumpy today unfortunately my lovely, I'm at the resentful teenager stage where I'm annoyed at the world cos I want a drink and can't have one, grrrrr :twisted:

Anyway have a lovely day tomorrow, I want to hear ALL about it when you get back <:)>
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

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squidger
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by squidger » 04 Nov 2010 12:51

What a wonderfull thread. (::)
Have just had a wonderfull read through. 2 posts that really stuck out for me.

(neal)
'I'm glad I peeped onto this thread. I was reading through various threads looking for advice. I am in the middle of day 3 and not feeling so strong. In the past I have felt good about resolving to stop - I need to stop. But starting again doesn't have the same 'buzz'. I know it's early days and I'll feel better and stronger and prouder as I go on (again).

(tee)
This thread sums up brilliantly what I need to do. Goodness knows how many months I've been at this now yet still here I am back again like a bad smell. Resetting my last drink date, chucking voddie down the sink like water. That must be the end of the cycle.

The beginning of the cycle is more subtle, lasting a few weeks or maybe even months, of sobriety. Then the shine wears off, I forget how utterly destroyed/devastated/disappointed in myself the last end was, and start to feel resentful of being clean, like I'm somehow 'missing out' by not drinking alcohol. Enter stage left the EAF, 'you don't smoke now, aren't you allowed any pleasures these days?' or 'it's only wine, it doesn't count etc...Followed by 'that wine is making you fat, V&DC is much better for you' :roll: Maybe a couple of weeks or even months of drinking without any major catastrophes, then bang. Wake up wondering what's going on/been going on/said and to whom bla bla bla.Feeling like shit and resolving to never EVER drink again.

I have no words of wisdom on this subject. I only hope if I put his post somewhere I can access it easily, it may indeed gain me some traction? Here goes, note to self, read thoroughly before purchasing alcohol.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The cycle and series of cycles within, are a right blighter to get past. But it has to be changed if things are ever going to improve.
As Neal says in his post the 'buzz' or sense of achievment of stopping dissapears when you have stopped for a bit or cut down to a very low level.
And as Tee points out, the start of the next cycle is very subtle and can creep up on you. You forget all the heartache, pain and struggle and begin to believe you are ok, you can handle this. All the time re -building your resitance, drinking steadily more, and more often and feeding the EAF every time she asks.

I know where i am at the moment, the new cycle has started, drinking a bit here and there. Not really enjoying it, so i feel safe. Kidding myself that by carrying on drinking i am learning more about the beast i want to slay. That feeling of slight panic, that really now is the time to let go of the alcohol. Its not physical need and we all know things are better without alcohol, or at least abuse of alcohol.
Why is it so hard just to let go, let it fade away into the distance and move on to a life without it.
It hurts us over and over again in a hundred different ways, if we were married i would want a divorce, related i would disown it, if were friends once we would firmly be enemies now.

So maybe this time, aim to keep the emotions more steadied and reasoned, there is no fight to be had with something that should no longer have bearing or input in your life. By fighting, the inner turmoil builds up and restores that need for drinking. Life without hangovers, extra money worries, inflated depression, relationship worries really is so much easier and more fulfilling.

Tommorrow it stops, indefinately, no counting, no celebrating it just ends. I may drink today, i may not. By not drinking it will make tommorrow easier.

Good luck all. <:)>

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Maddie
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Maddie » 04 Nov 2010 18:03

What a fabulous post Squidger. So well put, and so much to think about as well. Thanks for sharing that. <:)>

Maddie X
“Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it's better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.”

Marilyn Monroe

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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Tink » 04 Nov 2010 18:29

Brilliant post Squidger, really struck a note. (::) ;)?
I posted this on the regrouping but I really think it also applies here and hope it offers a bit of help? I wrote this in to reply to another post on there. It was kinda a revelation to me really and I really hope it strikes a note for others as well?

What makes us drink? Why do we want to? Want to drink? We want to so we do? The question is very deep inside as to why we really do want to though? It isn't really what someone says or does to us now it is what is deep inside us that makes us reach for the bottle, the pill, the stuff as a hoarder does or what ever the crutch might be? I think it is underlying anxiety? Not knowing how to comfort ourselves as we missed that somewhere down the line. I think so called normal folks have coping skills with stress that allows them to find healthy ways to comfort themselves in times of stress? We should learn that very early on but some of us miss that step? I did and that is why I think I smoke, drink and have such serious anxiety issues? I use to get the anxiety attacks so bad I would laterally almost faint. I couldn't even drive on a highway for some reason every time I saw a green sign to get on I would go into panic mode. It was terrifying and I couldn't breath, my arms would go numb and my vision would go all weird. One day I decided it wasn't gonna do this to me. I was going to fight. I was tired of takin the side roads. I got on. I (for me it was a little gold cross I wore on my neck) held on to it and said OK if I am gonna die it ain't gonna be in a panic attack. So I took off down the highway. When I felt it getting bad I just kept saying to myself just a little further, you are alright and if you need to pull off you can. Just the next exit and so on, kept getting nearer and nearer to where I wanted to go that day and it just so happened to be to the mall to pick out dresses for my son's wedding with my monster DIL :shock: . I was not going to let this take me out of doing something I really really wanted to do. I kept going. When I finally arrived I was shaking, pale and sweaty. I just kept breathing and saying I did it. I did it!!!!! Once that happened I had broke the spell it had on me. I knew I did it once so I could do it again. It came out of the blue these attacks and still don't know why? I have driven everywhere before they started and just all of a sudden there they were? WTH? However I did make myself see that I would be alright. I could do it and had done it. I haven't had one like that since. Why? I don't know still why they started. I do know why they ended. I learned to comfort myself. That was before I ended my drinking career. I now see it is attached to that as well. All connected. Comfort mechanism was all messed up. I am still learning how to comfort myself in healthy way instead of hurting myself. I don't know if this will help anyone else but it was a break through for me to know this. To finally see it through the fog of illusion I had in front of me most of my life. If you can see the enemy you can fight it. This is why I keep saying we have to be painfully honest with ourselves and have courage to face it. So hard. So scary but well worth it and once you do you really can be free again. <:)> Be kind to yourselves and truthful. (::)
Tink
Life is a journey not a destination. Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it is about learning to dance in the rain.

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squidger
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by squidger » 04 Nov 2010 19:34

Tink, so wonderfully put as always, full of hope and feeling . :)
If they could just figure out a way to bottle your posts or even bottle you and sell them instead of alcohol this world would be a far better place. <:)>

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Connie44
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Connie44 » 05 Nov 2010 10:03

Good post Squidger, I can so relate to that right now xx
I'm allergic to alcohol - it can kill me.

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squidger
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by squidger » 10 Nov 2010 09:50

Strong words not so well followed up in practice. Maybe its part of it, finding the ultimate boredom in drinking.
Certainly the biggest thing i miss is going out, feeling confident and meeting people. The dark side of that is drinking to cover up the embarassment of what happens next for the next few days.
Drinking a few beers here and there on your really serves no purpose anymore, with no big drunken messes to forget about. Getting the head into the right perspective for each individual is very important, and i think patience is important too, dont fall into the trap of getting dispondant about being able to stop, and drinking more again.
So i have discovered drinking alone is really boring when you dont need to, and the only reason i would have to is boredom/ lonlieness in the first place. I know i cant be trusted to go out drinking for one or two, so the time has now come to start going out again but not drinking at all. :shock:
Its quite hard when most of the places frequented have bar staff that have your pint on the bar by the time you have reached it. :roll:
The next trip wire is the whole aspect of the opposite sex. :oops: Much like the smiley i tend to mumble and bumble rubbish and miss that extra confidence. Quite sad when i think back that every time i have met someone it has been inebriated. So yet another cycle within the cycle to break. It would be quite nice to trust my sober judgment, without doing something later regretted or where more committed to because of things i said whilst pissed.

Lovely day out, no longer shall i sit here looking into false light garbling. :lol:
Have a good day all <:)>

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london bloke
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by london bloke » 10 Nov 2010 10:28

Squidger,

I get what you say about flirting / meeting prospective partners. There is a whole culture around 'needing a drink' in these situations.

Can I pick you up on your language ?
i tend to mumble and bumble rubbish and miss that extra confidence.
Alcohol does not give extra confidence IMHO. (Alan carr puts it better) If it did I would have been the world's most confident lothario. Instead alcohol disrupted my ability to chat and flirt as me. Also, I made an association between alcohol and attraction. Since becoming sober i realised that I do not see myself as attractive, I don't like rejection, and I don't like taking the initiative. But I am making progress on all these things cos my brain is working now! I am facing up, and its better (for me) than being all foggy about it. 'Rejection' and unwanted advances are all easier to deal with now.

IMHO - you are dead right that there is a 'cycle within a cycle' to break. But take heart Squidger - you are on the right track. It will get better when you break those wrong associations. Today, when I go to a club sober I feel MORE confident than when I had a drink or two. Go for it!
Alcohol = Anxiety: I have suffered for years.
Sobriety = Freedom: I have tasted freedom, and I want it more.

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momof5girls
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by momof5girls » 11 Nov 2010 17:59

I am absolutely fed up with myself
I fell off the wagon and am in really crappy shape.
I think I have to talk to my doctor for help
I almost made 30 days...
last drink date July 2, 2011
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Re: Breaking the cycle/gaining traction

Post by Bubbysmum » 11 Nov 2010 20:13

Lisa

The first thing to do is to hold your own hand today and be kind to yourself.. <:)>
Yes you made a bad/probably impulsive choice .. but you had almost 30 days and it shows that you can do it and do it again .. if you think your doctor will help try that..
But just pick yourself up and start over with a nice new day ..being down on yourself isn't needed..
Can you go back and think what your trigger was.. Lonely angry tired bored sad ...
It helps to know.. and I must say I have found CBT and REBT helpful for myself..
Check out SMART recovery online or go back and read some of the articles Tobin has put in at the at the beginning of this website.. often it's a distorted thought pattern that does us in..
Take care of you today <:)>

Oh.. i just saw your other post..it's over 'confidence'..
You are so creative.. your stuff is amazing..!!! I remember when you first joined you were worried about losing your creativity sober..working without a beer which had been your constant companion in the studio.. well yes you can.. you can be just as creative sober.. (::)

And don't panic.. just breathe.. everything will be ok..... ;)?

Wendy
Last edited by Bubbysmum on 11 Nov 2010 21:14, edited 1 time in total.

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