By Floyd Godfrey, LPC, CSAT candidate
The holiday season is such a blast because you’re out of school, you get to hang out with friends, and eat tons of delicious food at family activities. But if you’re a teen struggling with pornography addiction in Mesa AZ, then beware of some common triggers for temptation. If you prepare for the Christmas holiday then you’ll avoid slips and relapse. After working with teens struggling with pornography addiction in Mesa AZ, I’ve seen these triggers come up all the time:
1. FAMILY. There will be various holiday activities with friends and family. Dinner parties, family nights, or perhaps church services. It seems like there’s lots of chances for family to unite. However, sometimes family creates drama that can be upsetting or manipulative. Sometimes family members include people who abused you or who have consistently manipulated you. Other times they are simply unhealthy people that create a negative energy in the room. If family is a potential trigger, then prepare to set boundaries. This might be tricky as a teenager, but I would encourage you to discuss possible boundaries with an adult or mentor. Perhaps you need to limit your interaction with certain people. Adult mentors can help you in this decision.
2. TIRED. Late nights Xbox, hangout out with friends, and family celebrations that go late into the night. It’s awesome to stay up late and sleep in the next day, but it creates the possibility wearing yourself out. Even if you can sleep in for several hours, you won’t feel the same physically. If you become overly tired or worn out, you are much more likely to slip. Similarly, eating junk and candy all day will cause you to feel tired. Beware of the food you eat! Addiction is wired into the limbic brain, so when you’re worn out you’re more likely to slip. Plan ahead and set your alarm to avoid it. Get some good sleep and you’ll be happier in the long run.
3. CHANGE. You’re not in school! Fun for sure, but the holiday season creates tons of change in your routine. In fact, you probably don’t have one! You don’t have the normal structure of getting up for school. You can sleep in, shop during the day, hangout at the mall, go to the movies, or play Xbox all day. This change in routine can be triggering. To avoid this trigger try to create a plan to retain some form of routine. You might try doing things every day that help you to feel “productive.” For example, practicing your guitar, organizing your room, working on a hobby, or going to the gym. Simply find something that creates a routine and a feeling that you have been productive during your holiday break.
There may be many other triggers you stumble into during holiday break from school. You need to pay serious attention to Christmas triggers for pornography addiction. Plan ahead and you’ll avoid problems. If you would like to speak with a therapist trained in pornography addiction in Mesa Arizona, please give us a call. We can help: (480) 668-8301.