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Handling the Temptation to Try Drugs​

Set goals for yourself. Studies suggest that having goals (and people who support those goals) may help you be less likely to use drugs. This is likely because it encourages you to consider what you want out of your future and what you'll do to get yourself there. In contrast, using drugs is all about what feels "good" right now, regardless of the impact it makes on your future. If you feel tempted to try drugs, even once, consider what it may do to your goals for the future. How likely are you to be able to achieve your goals if you're dependent on an expensive and/or illegal drug, or in jail or with a criminal record for using it? Setting goals can also help improve your self-confidence. When you feel confident in yourself and your ability to achieve what you set out to do, you're less likely to want to do drugs. Setting and achieving goals is also crucial to getting off of drugs. This practice shows you that you can achieve what you set out to do, including kick your drug use.

Spend time with your loved ones.​

Spend time with your loved ones. Strong relationships  are a protective factor against drug use. In other words, having a strong relationship with your family and friends will make you less likely to give in to temptation. If you’re feeling pressured or curious about drug use, don’t keep it to yourself. Find someone you know, trust, and respect to talk to about it. 

​Spend time with your loved ones.​

Talk to someone about what’s going on. If you’re being pressured, even bullied, to try drugs, talk to someone in authority, such as a parent, teacher, or counselor. You don’t have to face this pressure on your own. Getting support from others will help you stand strong against drugs. Do something else to feel good. If you are tempted to use drugs, keep your focus on doing other things that are enjoyable and fun. Take up a hobby, go to the movies, spend more time with friends, play a fun video game, join a faith community, or help others out. This will help you find new meaning in your life. Go for a run, get lost in a novel, talk to family and friends, or actively try to solve your problems by seeking counselling. Talk about how you feel with friends or engage.

Avoid temptation. 

If there is a certain group of people at school who are known to do drugs, don't hang around them. You can find friends who are interested in more productive behaviors. If you are at a party and you realize that there are drugs there, simply leave. Peer pressure might make you crack, even if you're certain you'll be able to say no. Be aware that social influence is very strong, and it has an effect on your temptation to use drugs. Even social media can influence you to be more likely to use drugs. If you notice a lot of photos about drug use on your social media, consider blocking those sources of influence too.

Reflect on your temptations. 

If you're tempted to try drugs even when you're on your own, you can handle that temptation too. Think to yourself, "Why am I really wanting to try this?" What are your reasons for wanting to try drugs? If it's because you think everyone else is doing it and you want to connect with your buddies, remind yourself that not everyone is doing drugs. There are plenty of great, healthy ways to connect with your friends, such as taking up a hobby or sport together. If it's because you're feeling stressed or pressured, recognize that drug use is a common way to handle stress, but it's very unhealthy. There are great ways to handle stress, such as exercise, yoga, and meditation. If you feel really stressed out, talking to a therapist could help too. Remember that your decision-making skills haven’t fully matured if you’re a teen. Choosing to use drugs is a decision that could haunt you for life.

Handling temptation

Say no assertively. Most likely there will come a time when you will be asked to do drugs. Be firm in your answer and do not hesitate. If you hesitate you leave the door open for peer pressure. If someone who offers you drugs asks you why you do not want to do them you do not need to give any reasons. Just say that you don’t do drugs. If you provide reasons you leave the door open for further conversation, where the person can then try to persuade you to try the drugs.

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