Reaching for a smoke because things feeling shit? Firstly, this isn't surprising or abnormal since weed was probably your go-to coping mechanism before you decided to make a change. But wait!
The reason this is happening, could be because you've jumped onto a toxic train of thought. If one of the following feels like you, just realising this may be a great relief, and ease your desire to use cannabis.
If this is you, then it could be that this feeling is actually a trigger for you. Positive feelings can also make you want a smoke. You might want to celebrate, or when you're already feeling really good, you might feel like cannabis will make it even better. If this happens there are a few things you can try. First, remember there are countless ways to enhance a good feeling, not only cannabis. Try doing something else you enjoy that you can’t do when you are smoking.
Flip the situation and think about the times when cannabis did not make you feel good or when you felt guilty because you smoked. You might also want to remind yourself why you originally decided to change.
And don’t underestimate the power of just being content with the good feeling you are experiencing. Think of what you would be sacriﬁcing by ruining it with cannabis? Is it worth it just to feel a little happier now?
A slip is when you use cannabis after planning not to. If you've had a slip, don’t beat yourself up. Yes, each slip feeds a craving, instead of starves it; and yes, it's a hurdle on your path to change. But realise you’ve taken huge steps already, and this setback does not mean you’ve failed.
It's not a major crisis (remember de-drama ), it's a chance to learn. Ask yourself where things went wrong, and devise an action plan.
Trigger: I went to Ben’s place where everyone was stoned and before I knew it I was smoking up.
|1. Avoid Ben's place for a little while|
|2. Practice delaying the next visit to Ben's place|
|3. Identify the reasons I went to Ben’s place when I know he's a heavy smoker (See below)|
Some slips are situational, others could be intentional. Why do you think you used cannabis again? Can you identify when it first occurred to you that using cannabis might be a good idea?
Maybe quitting seems like too much effort. You might get tired of the whole thing and take a night off, or you might decide that you deserve a reward for your hard work and having a smoke is how you reward yourself. If you ﬁnd that you slipped intentionally, go to action 3. The ups and downs of using and think more about the reasons you decided to change. Do you need to update your journal entry? Go to action 4. Am I ready to change? Are you?
No matter how dedicated, you might have a slip simply because you couldn't resist. You could kick yourself when you realise that the urge would have passed in a short while, so think about what can be improved. Are there trigger situations you're finding too hard? How can you deal with high-risk triggers more effectively? Update your journal entry on action 11. Deal to your triggers with your new plans.