Addiction Triggers Are Real, And Can Come From The Strangest Places
by Michael Walsh
Today I experienced something that comes up periodically for me even after over ten years of complete abstinence. The difference today is I know how to deal with it.
To get through the trigger, I used the “play-the-tape” tool.
It is a beautiful September afternoon in Victoria Canada and I am at home practising self-care, as it has been a busy week. I have been clean and sober over ten years now and some people might think that because I have done a ton of personal development related to substance use and addictions that I would be out-of-the-woods.
That is not always so clear cut.
I have been using Vitamin C Crystals (Ascorbic Acid) periodically for about one year. The crystals pack the biggest punch, so I use it instead of tablets.
Today I was placing several spoons of the crystals from the container into a bowl, so it is easier to get at. Wow! Major trigger of past use of cocaine floods through my brain and my body. The rituals of preparing the cocaine for use rushes through my mind. The powdery ascorbic acid is playing tricks on me. It looks like powdery cocaine to me and I am quite triggered by its presence. The rush for me lasts about one minute.
Luckily for me I am able to get through those kinds of thoughts fairly quickly and easily these days. My life is so much different today than say five years ago.
Today when triggers occur I, amongst other useful tools, “play-the-tape” back to where I once was that brought me to where I am today. The personal darkness, the despair, the lying, the cheating, the deception and the hurt I caused many people.
Getting started with a Sober Coach and Interventionist
I’m a Certified and Credentialed Addiction Recovery Coach & Interventist with extensive knowledge in the field of substance use disorders. I’ve been trained by some of the best in the field and continue to remain active in various recovery communities both in Canada, and internationally.
If you’re looking for help to stop drinking, help to moderate drinking, or support in dealing with a substance use concern of any kind, please feel free to reach out to me. I offer one-on-one recovery coaching, family support, and drug and alcohol intervention services.
I offer a no-charge consult call to anyone who has questions about their own substance use, or the substance use of a family member. These calls are completely confidential with no pressure to make a decision before you feel entirely ready.
And if you’re still wondering, “do I have a drinking problem?”, please check out this blog post, where you’ll find helpful steps for evaluating the role that alcohol plays in your life. If you want to know more about how to help someone with a substance use concern please read my article about deploying the CRAFT Model of Addiction.
I’d also like to invite you to read more about my personal story here.
If you’re ready to explore the potential of working together, I’d love to chat. Michael is based in Victoria British Columbia Canada and as of June 26, 2022 the other Recovery Coaches on the team are based in Nanaimo, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax. Because we all work virtually — we can work with anyone no matter what city, province or country around the world. We have clients in Seattle, Los Angeles, Dallas, Miami, New York City, Denver, Nashville, Berlin, Tel Aviv, London, Singapore and Australia.