The Importance of Emotional Muscle

No one gets through life without experiencing hardship. Drugs of abuse tend to flatten emotional range which can serve to protect the user from distress. One of the tasks of recovery is to learn to deal with emotions without turning to an over-use of pills, such as anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medications, or switching their drug of choice. Emotional muscle is required for a sustained recovery. Without emotional muscle people in recovery are prone to relapse.

Discussion Guide:

When you were abusing substances, did you notice that your emotions were numbed?

Did you notice a return of strong emotions when you ceased abusing substances?

Have you experienced difficulties during recovery that you could not cope with? Did it cause a relapse?

Do you have coping skills and tools to manage distress?

Are there new tools you would like to develop?

Supplemental Reading:

Stress Management: How To Reduce, Prevent and Cope with Stress, by HelpGuide.Org http://www.helpguide.org/articles/stress/stress-management.htm

Emotion Focused Techniques for Stree Relief, by Elizabeth Scott http://stress.about.com/od/stressmanagementglossary/g/Emotion-Focused-Coping-Techniques-For-Stress-Relief.htm