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Try These Top 5 Coping Skills to Manage Recovery

woman practices meditation as a coping skill

Even though different tools resonate with different people, there are tome top coping skills that can really be beneficial for people in recovery. Many people are further down the road than newbies in sobriety who can offer wisdom. Often gleaning from them what worked can help build a strategy for coping better in your own life.

Distract and Avoid

The first line of defense is avoiding triggers and finding healthy distractions when triggers arise. Learning to avoid obvious triggers is helpful. Also, calling a sponsor, talking a walk, or finding something fun to do as a distraction can kick the craving or trigger to the side for the time being.


Mindfulness and meditation can offer many ways of coping with stress and anxiety. Numbing out is not the way to go. Mindfulness is backed by research that helps people focus on the present moment, paying attention to thoughts and feelings without judgment. People with addictions learn to ride the wave of cravings until it passes and sit with what is uncomfortable and still stay sober.

Sober Support

People who attend recovery meetings and have sober support will be more likely to stay away from substances long term. There are fun things to do and people to hang out with who are committed to sobriety. It also gives hope for the future.

Contrary Action

This essentially means doing something different than what you feel like doing. Because your mind and body have been hijacked by drugs and your life revolves around substances, people in recovery may feel like doing what is unhealthy. Contrary action calls you to evaluate this and choose recovery.


Learning to treat yourself with kindness can be uncomfortable at first for people recovering from addiction. It can help reduce shame, stress, isolation, depression, and anxiety. It is also a useful prevention tool. If you are gentle with yourself, you allow space to have a bad day without assuming you are a bad person. Coping in recovery goes well beyond imagining how to deal with triggers and cravings. It is also about how to cope with emotional stress and stay sober. Only you control what you think about and how you behave. If you take ownership of that, you will feel more successful in recovery.

Arbor Behavioral Healthcare knows that lifetime sobriety, health, and wellness, are completely possible. Each of our treatment programs offer the opportunity for holistic healing utilizing an integrative approach for the recovery of mind, body, and spirit. You can recover. You will recover. Call us today for more information: 844-560-7269