Drugs Don’t Love You: 5 Signs It’s Time to Break Away
“Oh, I could quit any time, if I wanted to. I just don’t want to.” How many times have you heard this from a friend or loved one with a drug problem? Or how many times have you said it to yourself to convince yourself you didn’t have one? Whether your drug habit is recreational, like marijuana, or severe, like heroin, read on for some reasons to break away.
You find yourself needing a larger quantity of the substance or increasingly more intense substances in order to achieve the desired effect. Other activities you once enjoyed (sports, hanging out with friends, art, or music) no longer stimulate your interest.
You experience physical and psychological symptoms when you’re not under the influence, such as nausea, insomnia, shaking, paranoia and anxiety, depression, restlessness, or perspiration. You may even take other drugs, or lower doses of your usual substance to try to ward off or relieve these withdrawal symptoms.
Perhaps you have told friends or family that you were going to be sober in order to keep the peace, even while you’re under the influence. You frequently find yourself having to lie and come up with excuses for your absences from planned activities, your appearance, or your perhaps erratic behavior. You’re stealing time away from yourself and your loved ones in order to engage in drug use. You’re constantly worrying about smelling like marijuana or needing to have eye drops or other supplies on hand to disguise your recent drug use.
4. You have tried, and failed, to break away from drugs in the past.
This is a sign you’ve lost control of your drug use. A disproportionate amount of your time is spent thinking about using drugs, how to get money for drugs, where to obtain your next hit, or recovering from the effects of the drug. Even when you’ve told yourself you won’t do any drugs that day, or you won’t indulge beyond a certain point, you’re constantly unable to break away or stay within the limits you’ve set for yourself.
5. Drugs are causing you more trouble than they’re worth.
Admitting you have a problem is the first step to solving it. This clichéd sentence has never been more true when drugs are causing you problems at work, compromising your relationships with friends and family members, depleting your bank account, ruining your health and appearance, and getting you into trouble with organized crime, gangs, or the law.
Still not convinced? Here are five ways in which breaking away from drugs can improve your quality of life.
1. Improved feeling of self respect along with reduced anxiety
2. Better physical health including ability to breathe, and improved sensory perception, especially smell
3. Ability to concentrate and remember things in the long- and short-term
4. Reduce overall stress by actively dealing with problems instead of indulging in drug use to temporarily forget about issues rather than resolve them
5. Free up spending money to support yourself, support your family, or to save for larger purchases: vacations, or going back to school to obtain or finish a degree and improve your career prospects
If you feel powerless to break away, reach out for professional help and support. Trying to quit on your own is not more noble, and it is harder. When you’re on your own it can be easy to make excuses, saying “one last hit.” And then another…. and another. It takes strength and courage to face your substance abuse problems and begin making a positive improvement in your life. Make today the day you stand up for yourself. Drugs don’t love you; it’s time to break away.