HALT is something we hear in AA meetings, telling us to stop and take a look at what’s going on with our minds and bodies. HALT is an acronym for Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired. These are all thing we need to be aware of because it can throw a wrench in our day, or program of recovery.
H is for hunger. When we’re hungry, we cannot think straight. We are irritable, quick to fight, and it negatively affects our mood. A spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association, Marjorie Nola explains, “when [blood sugar] is low, the hypothalamus is triggered and levels of several hormones such as growth hormone, leptin, and ghrelin are affected. This imbalance then causes a shift in neurotransmitters and suppresses serotonin receptors.”
When we aren’t producing enough serotonin, mood swings will surely arise. Frustration and anger usually follow. Eat a healthy snack, and healthy meals. Try to stay away from fatty or sugary snacks, and you’ll feel better throughout the day.
A for anger comes next. Anger is also something important to look out for. When we’re angry, we certainly don’t think clearly. We may say or do things that are mean, or inappropriate. Words spoken in anger cause pain and hurt. When we are in a program of recovery, we all strive not to induce any pain on others.
If we can stop ourselves before acting out in anger, real personal growth and development will follow. We will feel proud of ourselves and see a different person than we were when we were using.
L for loneliness can be scary sometimes. When we feel lonely, we feel like no one is there to support or understand us. Many times we turned to drugs or alcohol to fill the void of loneliness. When we enter the program of recovery, we learn we are never alone.
Most AA meeting will have a phone list on the literature table with the names and numbers of people who will be glad to talk to you or meet up with you. Every person in those meetings has walked a similar path, so they have a deeper understanding of what you’re going through. If you’re feeling lonely, pick up the phone and make a call.
T for tired. When we’re tired, we feel overwhelmed, irritable, and exhausted. Even the smallest task can seem impossible. It’s important we take care of ourselves and look out for our health. Get a good nights sleep. Meditate on a regular basis. Take a nap if it’s possible. It’s not selfish to take a break for yourself, it’s necessary.
When you feel hungry, angry, lonely, or tired, it’s time to stop, and take care of yourself. Make sure you’re giving your mind and body what it needs. If you are self medicating through drugs and alcohol, checking into our Colorado based substance abuse treatment center is a great idea. Harmony Foundation is a safe place where you can find recovery and learn to live a healthy life free from addiction.