“What Makes Me Drink Alcohol?” Identifying Your Triggers
Your relationship to alcohol is unique and personal. It can be affected by all areas of your life including people, places, events, emotions or a combination of these. Quality treatment for heavy drinking includes an exploration of your triggers, so let’s get into what that means (here’s more info about what to look for — besides an exploration of your triggers — in treatment for your drinking).
Get a jump start on treatment by understanding your own triggers.
Think about who you are with when you drink. Do you feel the urge more often when you’re in group settings or when you’re alone?
Consider what goes through your mind right before you start drinking. Are these thoughts tied to a particular feeling or emotion, positive or negative?
When do you feel the urge? Maybe there are certain situation or specific dates, like holiday season with your family or the anniversary of the death of a loved one. Or perhaps it’s certain times of the day or days of the week.
Think of some places that you are more likely to want to drink. Are these places that are part of your regular routine?
Once you identify your triggers, it will become easier for you to take proactive steps to prevent urges.
Of course, some triggers are unavoidable and sometimes the urge to drink more than you planned to arises when you don’t expect it. Triggers can pop up hours, or even days, before you drink. Managing urges is a challenging but necessary part of treatment for everyone.
But by taking the time to evaluate the triggers that lead you to drink, you’ve taken an important first step in the right direction. Congratulations!