Skip to content
2 min read

Three Huge Triggers for People in Recovery

Everyone in recovery has triggers, which are small or large things that cause them to want to get high, drunk, or act poorly. These are things like situations or emotions (sometimes subtle) that caused you to use in the past. Because drinking or using drugs was your reaction in the past, when these situations happen to you as a newly sober person, you may feel triggered.

Understanding Triggers

Here’s how triggers work. Sally is a newly recovering alcoholic. She might feel a desire to drink when she passes the bar she used to go to every Friday night. She may be triggered on payday, when she used to spend part of her paycheck on a trip to the liquor store. When Sally gets in an argument with her spouse, her first reaction used to be to take a drink to “calm her nerves”.

Now that Sally is sober, she has to learn to understand and cope with her triggers.


3 Huge Triggers to Watch Out For


  • Boredom: If you’re bored, you’re not moving forward. It’s time to find new hobbies and learn how to have fun in recovery. Start socializing with others in recovery. Go to sober events and explore meetings. When you find yourself getting bored, make it a point to start scheduling activities like going out with your friends or spending some time meditating.
  • Loneliness: Loneliness is as dangerous as boredom, and it can creep up on you. When you’re new in recovery, it’s easy to feel lonely and overwhelmed. You are making new fsober riends by now, but it's still hard sometimes. Try to reach out to your sponsor and others in recovery if you’re feeling lonely. Go to a meeting when you’re feeling lonely. You may feel lonely, but you’re never alone. People want to help you stay clean and sober.
  • Complacency: You’re skipping your aftercare meetings because you prefer to spend the morning in bed. You decide that instead of going to AA meetings every night, you’ll go every other night. You put your step work under a pile of magazines. When you bail on your obligations, you make yourself and recovery vulnerable to relapse. Do the work and keep the promises to yourself.

These are three big triggers for people who are new to recovery. Don’t let boredom, loneliness, or complacency grab ahold of you. Instead, share with others where you’re at in life. Go to as many 12-step meetings as you’re capable, and don’t pick up a drink or a drug. Take it a day at a time.


Looking for Sober Housing

Some people know they need some extra support when they have finished treatment. Are you looking for a supportive, therapeutic sober housing arrangement as you transition back to the community? We can help you learn about your options. Contact us at 1-760-216-2077 for more information.






Read Full Bio
Mark Gladden
CEO / Founder
Mark Gladden is the founder of By The Sea Recovery, a sober living facility located in beautiful San Diego, California. After struggling with addiction, Mark finally found recovery and a new purpose in life, to help others who are battling the same battle he faced.
Customer Testimonials
  • Very Friendly staff and a great living facility

    My brother, we’ll call him James to protect his anonymity, came here after attending their detox and inpatient program. He’s had tremendous success and currently has over six months of sobriety!

    - Jeff Hanson

  • This is not your average sober living.

    My family has been reunited and we share a beautiful relationship today. By the Sea is the cornerstone of my recovery and I am forever grateful for the experience I have had with the people I consider my family.

    - Adam Herald

  • We highly recommend Mark and his facility.

    Mark answered a cold call from us when we were confused and desperate trying to help our son. Six months later he is transitioning to living on his own and we are thankful for Mark and the By the Sea community.

    - Google Reviewer