Prolonged recovery success from alcohol and drug addiction can depend on risk and trigger situation avoidance very much. Often drug addicts and alcoholics become quite good at not using drugs and alcohol under ideal situations. Ideal situations are those that are scheduled, supportive, drug/alcohol free and routine.
Seldom will an addict get up in the middle of an A.A. meeting or N.A. meeting because at that very moment, they’d reached a breaking point and are off to buy drugs or drink. This is an example of an ideal situation. These community groups are very supporting occasions. They are a place of honesty, humility and security. Meetings are often scheduled at time addicts may have used in the past. For example, many A.A. clubs will hold Saturday night meetings, weekday lunch meetings and 5:00 weekday meetings. These are all times alcoholics might choose to have a drink. This timing is an example of avoiding trigger situations and relapse risk management.
Provided that there is some sort of daily routine or schedule daily life can be relatively risk-free for an addict to get through. Going to work, getting lunch and coming home are instances where an addict or alcoholic has structure and purpose. Risk triggers are easily avoided in these examples. An addict can chose to socialize with workfolks that do not converse about drugs and parties. An alcoholic can choose to stop at gas stations that do not sell liquor and beer. An addict can choose to stop at a 5:00 clubhouse meeting on the way home instead of a bar. Some of the most dangerous times for prolonged recovery are times out side of these scheduled events.
An addict is strong enough to fight addiction 90% of he time. Times of elevated risk are situational and require support. Getting a sponsor from a local A.A. or N.A. club can be very helpful when times of need arise. This is just a person to call in confidence at moments of weakness. Examples of risk are nights when a drink might help one sleep, after group-sporting events when teams go to a bar, stereotypical party holidays like the Forth of July, Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day weekend. These are occasions where an addict might allow himself slip up using the tradition of the situation as an enabler and it is important to have a sponsor to call to help avoid using during these situations or ones like them.