Anyone in the recovery community quickly learns that unchecked and untreated anxiety is an express route to a setback in our progress. Relapse comes in many forms and on many vehicles, and anxiety and depression are two of the most common platforms. Right now, there is a great deal of anxiety all across the country and it can be difficult to not internalize that and let it affect our lives. Whether it’s the result of a political event, turmoil within our families, financial concerns or anything else, anxiety is everywhere and we can either let it consume us or we can harness it and use it as an opportunity to learn more about ourselves.

When we feel ourselves starting to be affected by fear, apprehension or anxiety, there are a number of things we can do to self-diagnose, and begin to remedy the situation. Some of these devices include taking the situation to our therapist and getting their perspective or simply relying on an objective friend or loved one. We can also bring the issue up at our recovery meeting and get the perspectives of those who may be also suffering from some level of anxiety. The point is to externalize our issues and make sure we have some place to go to voice our concerns.

The road to relapse is commonly traveled by those who have let anxiety consume their daily lives. Many begin to feel that it’s just easier to escape back into substance rather than deal with their trauma or worry head on. Part of the recovery process is developing the emotional strength to deal with adversity that has nothing to do with our substance abuse so we don’t let it derail our progress. It’s important to remember that we are never alone and that we have options of which we can avail ourselves if we’re feeling vulnerable for any reason.