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Unstructured Time

answered 08:49 AM EST, Fri July 12, 2013
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anonymous anonymous
Having free time is a major relapse trigger for me. I am 7.5 months sober and one way I have made it so far is by staying busy all the time. I have a scheduler and it is full. I feel like this is not sustainable but I am not sure how to power down or if I am ready. How do I start to face unstructured time without putting myself at risk?

Anna Deeds Says...

Anna Deeds A. Deeds
MSED, NCC, LPC

Thank you for your question. Structuring your time is a great way to keep your mind off relapse in early recovery. However, you are right that you cannot 'keep busy' the rest of your life. You could see if you are ready for unstructured time by scheduling small blocks of time, maybe an hour or half hour in the beginning and observe how you feel. If you start to feel bored or triggered, use your support. You won't know if it will trigger you until you try it. The key is to have people in your life who you can call immediately if you do feel like using. I hope this answers your question. 

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