How Relapse Dreams in Recovery Is Actually Your Mind Coping

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A sober man who can't sleep sitting in bed with his head on his hand. White overlay with black text - How to use Relapse Dreams In Recovery As A Built-In coping Mechanism,

Do you have relapse dreams in recovery? Relapse dreams are perfectly normal. In fact, every recovering addict has relapse dreams in recovery. Every single one of us.

In early sobriety, using dreams were a nightly occurrence. As the days, months, and years went on, my relapse dreams lessened. Although, when I did dream about relapse, it was an extremely vivid experience.

Initially, I would freak out, get extremely paranoid. I would wake up, dashing around the house,  checking on my kids, and replaying in my head what happened the previous day until I was absolutely certain it was only a dream.

So why does this happen? Why do we all have relapse dreams in recovery?

The Power of Dreaming

I want you to think about it like this…

For each person, there are numerous types of dreams that can occur.

We have archetypal dreams, which contain universal forms, to guiding dreams that outline how to deal with a certain issue.

If you are anything like me then you have extremely vivid and lucid dreams. Where you, the dreamer is aware and can even make conscious choices during your dream.

The power of dreaming is truly incredible.

In fact, you need to dream. That includes having relapse dreams in recovery. Did you ever have a relapse dream where you wake up and you actually feel physically high or drunk?  Now those are weird dreams, aren’t they?!

In this post, I will outline the reasons why having relapse dreams once sober are actually a secret coping skill.

Pay attention and prepare to be amazed!

But first, pin the image below. Please and thank you.

Dreaming Is Your Mind’s Way of Coping

Yes, believe it or not, dreaming is your very own, built-in coping mechanism.

Dreaming is our subconscious’ way of coping with anything and everything going on in our everyday life.

Your subconscious knows all. It knows your thoughts, your innermost secrets, feelings, emotions, fantasies, and fears. All of those can come into play when you shut your eyes and let your mind take control.

Truth About Dreaming

We have all experienced amazing types of dreams; the sort where you wake up and you do everything in your power to go back to sleep and get back to the moment.

There have been a lot of sleep studies and tips on this. Many, many, many people have searched for more information on how we can get back to our dreams and especially why we have woken up at what seems to be the best moment in our dream.

RELATED POST: Dreams In Recovery – What Your Dreams Mean + Tips To Intensify Them

However, we have all experience frightening dreams too. Dreams which have made us scared to go back to sleep. Personally, I suffered from night terrors for years and took medication for PTSD.

There is no denying that dreams can be somewhat perplexing. But the truth is dreaming is actually critical for our emotional health.

P.S. – Download the FREE dream journal to really get a grasp on your dreams. And become part of our online family with weekly emails, tips, goodies, and much more.

Dreaming Is A Coping Mechanism

Do you know anyone that suffers from depression? If so, there is a high chance they experience insomnia too.

And this is why.

Dream sleep is critical for dealing with life’s emotions. Of course, I am not saying dreams can totally cure depression. Yet, dreams do have a critical role to play in your overall wellbeing.  

It is easy to think that dreams are simply strange expressions of the imagination. But, they are so much more than that. There are lots of things that can be occurring at various levels below your dreams.

Dreams can help you deal with the activities and stresses of everyday life. While also helping your mind to rejuvenate and heal. For instance, lucid dreams can help a person to put right some of the subconscious patterns that are knotted in your life, heart, and mind.

Dreaming also helps you to resolve conflicts and regulate your mood. When you sleep, you work out your feelings, allowing you to feel more settled in the morning.

RELATED POST: 6 Crucial Tips For Preventing A Relapse

This means that any experiences you are dealing with do not need to have such a huge impact on your life. Since dreaming is your minds’ way of coping, you work out your emotional issues while your head is on the pillow. It’s pretty cool if you think about it.

Therefore, in the short-term, dreams can assist with your mood. However, the long-term benefits are even more substantial.

Coping Without Using

You can deal with deeply stressful situations that have developed over time. 

A perfect example would be you overcoming your addiction. Because let’s be honest, going from addiction to building a sober life is not an easy task what so ever.  It can be stressful as hell.

Seriously. You are trying to rebuild your life WITHOUT your #1 coping mechanism. Not to mention, you want a successful, exciting sober life where you can thrive and accomplish everything you ever wanted. Not to simply get by, going through the motions of a mundane boring life. 

Dark grunge background of a man in a hoodie who is staring at a syringe filled with heroin.

Relapse Dreams In Recovery

I guarantee that even if you are in long term recovery, your subconscious can still be thinking about using years down the road. But hopefully, this post has shed some light on the power of dreaming and how it is a coping mechanism.

After being sober for years, I still have occasional relapse dreams in recovery or in my dream, I’m about to relapse but my dream ends. Now, instead of waking up in a panic, I think about it differently.

For example, if having a relapse dream bothered me enough to wake me up out of a dead sleep. Then, I know that I am taking my recovery seriously. I want to stay clean. I want to continue my sober lifestyle. I don’t think all day about getting high and potentially relapsing.

In fact, it’s the complete opposite.

Another possibility is this. Think about the things going on in your life at the moment. Is there something that is making you feel the same way you did while using or have you picked up another bad habit that you need to kick?

RELATED POSTS: 4 Tips To Improve Your Well-being In Recovery

Another possibility could be that maybe I’m stressed af about something in my life. For over a decade when I couldn’t handle something, I got high as hell.  So, having a relapse dream could simply be my body and mind’s way of coping with that situation or problem.

Power of Dreaming

While it is easy to think that dreams are just a fun experience, or in some cases a frightening one, that’s not true.

There is actually a lot more to them than that. Having drug dreams or relapse dreams in recovery is merely a coping mechanism that is at work while our body is not.

Dreams hold power. They are vital to our well-being.

P.S. Don’t forget to get your free dream journal to improve your well-being and continue to uplevel your kick-ass sober life.

P.S.S. When you sign up, not only do you get the FREE dream journal but you are now part of our online family. You get the newsletter, access to the Sober Living Toolkit, sober living tips, freebies, giveaways, and #soberbadassery.

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I am NOT a licensed therapist. For immediate help call the Substance Abuse Mental Health Service Adminstration’s 1-800-662-HELP. It's a free 24/7 service for ppl facing mental +/or substance use disorders.Or you can use the online treatment locator HERE.

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