What to do when Faced with a Craving

Regardless how much time in sobriety you have, how many meetings you attend, or how thoroughly you’ve worked your program of recovery, there will come a time when you experience a craving for your substance of choice. Cravings tend to strike when we are in a particularly vulnerable state of mind. Therefore, you should educate yourself on things to do when a craving occurs so you can let it pass without acting on it and relapsing.

One of the many acronyms you encounter in the 12-step rooms of recovery is “HALT”. This refers to the four most common feelings that result in a craving: hunger, anger, loneliness, or tiredness. HALT also refers to what you should do when experiencing a craving – take a pause and examine your present condition. Are you experiencing any of those four feelings at the present moment? If you are, focus on taking immediate action to correct this unbalanced emotional state and the craving will pass.

Another immediate action you should take during a craving is to reach out and call your sponsor or one of your sober supports. Talk to them about what you are feeling, where you are, what you are doing, and what you are going to do in response to your craving. Sharing your feelings will help you process them, and your sober supports could have some insight as to a helpful response to the craving you are having.

One more step you can take to further prevent your relapse is known as playing the tape through. As you are craving your substance of choice, think about everything that would transpire were you to indulge the craving and relapse. Think of the slow, inevitable spiral your life would take, all the hard-won progress you’ve made lost, all the relationships you’ve healed destroyed. Think all the way through to the end of that scenario, right back to where you found yourself the day you finally had a moment of clarity and asked for help with your addiction. Remember the pain and anguish you felt, the horror that your life had become. All that and more is waiting for you should you choose to set your addiction off again.

Cravings are a part of recovery. Everyone experiences them, as they are a natural response to stress for anyone accustomed to using substances to relieve stress. At Evolutions Treatment Center, we aim to arm our clients with as much knowledge about the insidious nature of their addiction as we can, as well as provide useful tools to fight their disease when it is pushing them to use. These are just some of the many techniques available to you to fight off cravings as they surface. Call our Admissions Counselors today at 833-818-3031 and begin your journey on the path of recovery armed with all the tools necessary to achieve long term sobriety.


Evolutions is a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center located in beautiful South Florida. Our holistic approach to addiction treatment centers around addressing and healing the underlying issues at the root of addiction, rather than merely medicating symptoms away.

Our treatment program includes individual and group-based therapy to help clients understand and manage their symptoms and emotions.

If you or a loved one is suffering from addiction, alcoholism, or any co-occurring disorders please call us at (833) 818-3031 or visitwww.evolutionstreatment.com