Tools for Managing Cravings in Recovery

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When you are in recovery, you face a lifelong challenge of maintaining your sobriety and living a life of purpose. But one of the biggest challenges you’ll face immediately after you complete a treatment program is managing cravings in recovery. In this blog, you will learn helpful techniques that can aid you in managing cravings for a long-term recovery.

Three Techniques for Managing Cravings in Recovery

So, what are the best ways to manage cravings?

Mindfulness and Meditation

Managing cravings in recovery is best done when you are able to practice mindfulness and meditation. You have no control over when and how cravings will strike, how intense they will be, or what other stress might arise in your life. The only thing over which you have control is how you respond to those stresses and cravings. To that end, mindfulness and meditation skills can go a long way toward empowering you to take control over your emotional reactions.

When many people face cravings or stress they try to suppress it, control it, or otherwise change it. What is healthier is to instead acknowledge how those stresses or triggers are making you feel, and then use healthy coping strategies to openly support those emotions, negative or positive.

Meditation is a great tool for supporting those emotions and for making space to sit with them. Too often, when things are stressful, or there are triggers or cravings, people try to overload themselves so they don’t think about it, but too many distractions without paying attention to emotions can lead to self-medication and relapse.

Instead, making time for meditation is a critical way to openly make space for how you are feeling, to figure out what has triggered your craving, and to reflect on what you might need to feel better.


Yoga is a wonderful tool for managing cravings in recovery because it provides you with a learning opportunity to sit with discomfort and recognize that uncomfortable feelings or sensations like stress and cravings are temporary.

When you practice yoga, much of your work is meditative and mindful, because you are focused on your breathing and the poses you are holding. While practicing yoga, you are recognizing that the poses are uncomfortable, strenuous, and challenging, but when you focus on the things within your control, like your breathing, you can meditatively learn to cope with the temporary discomfort. More than that, you can recognize that all discomfort is temporary, whether it is physical, emotional, or mental.

Other recreational activities like sports or hiking provide a chance to improve your physical and mental strength, boost your self-esteem, improve your mood, and give you a way to thoughtfully engage your mind apart from the cravings. Recreational activities also provide a chance to be social and to connect with other people.

Social Support

Social support is a key way to go about managing cravings in recovery. One of the biggest factors that contributes to relapse is feelings of isolation. A lot changes once you go through recovery. You might change, the people you associate with might change, and the activities you do will very much change. As a direct result, it can be lonely when you don’t have people to whom you can turn.

For that reason, managing your cravings is best done when you make time to socialize with other people in a sober capacity and when you continue to participate in sober activities and support groups.

Managing Cravings in Recovery with The Differents

With The Differents, clients learn how to manage their cravings through personalized, holistic care at our trusted drug rehab in Reno. Whether you are participating in our partial hospitalization program or intensive outpatient program, you will find several holistic forms of care and activities that encourage craving management skills, including:

  • Massage
  • Yoga/pilates 
  • Meditation
  • IV Infusions
  • Sound Bath
  • Energy Work

At each level of care, we focus on reimagining the treatment process. In addition to traditional, evidence-based therapies like cognitive behavioral therapy and acceptance and commitment therapy, clients can enjoy holistic therapy that provides more control over coping mechanisms like mindfulness and meditation, music therapy, art therapy, and recreational therapy.

Ongoing support is a critical piece of the success of our programs, which is why we offer a continuum of care with ongoing groups for those who successfully complete their program, as well as family sessions and referral services. Participation in our alumni programs means access to ongoing support when you need it most.

Overall, managing cravings comes down to developing coping techniques and other life skills that work best for you and your circumstances. When you work with a top-tier drug and alcohol rehab facility, you’ll have access to several techniques and resources that can support this.

Contact our team today to learn more about our addiction recovery programs and how we can help you manage craving in recovery.

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