6 Techniques To Stay Sober For The Holidays

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Be it helping the host with dishes or cooking or any volunteer opportunities to stay occupied and not thinking about ways to use. Giving back is part of finding strength in recovery. Toxic people can cause stress, anxiety, rage, or anger. These feelings could direct you to a relapse, so avoid these people. Going through treatment and readjusting to a new sober lifestyle is an enormous undertaking. When you are tempted, remind yourself of the difficult process in changing your addictive behavior. If you’re in Al-anon, you obsess about your family member’s drinking.

You will wake up fresh and feeling ready to accomplish whatever the day may bring. With Labor Day coming up fast to mark the start of the holiday season, there’s not time like the present to brush up on your approach to sober holidays this year. No matter what traditions you celebrate or practice, this can be a time of wonder and warmth with the right approach. Rely on your sober network – Starting your day with a 12-step meeting helps you get in the right mindset and sets the tone for the day. Make arrangements with your sponsor or sober friends to call for extra support throughout the day. While you enjoy holiday gatherings, it’s important to keep the needs of your body and mind first.

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„So many individuals have been isolated for so long and are feeling their way to getting back out,” McIntosh said. „Sometimes we want to drain those emotions by drinking or using another substance.” Maybe it’s difficult for you to get through those quiet evenings or weekends at home where you only worry about the next family gathering or work social. If you find yourself struggling with the upcoming holiday festivities, there are plenty of opportunities for you to get involved in other activities during the holidays.

  • I felt uneasy and awkward around all people in all situations.
  • The nice thing is that you can make the holidays whatever you want them to be.
  • Familiar holiday traditions and big group gatherings in a sober environment can be a big help in making the holidays feel special.
  • In the end, the humility you gain will only strengthen your recovery.
  • If you or a loved one are struggling with sobriety, help is a phone call away.
  • This little brag sheet is a great way to remind yourself that good things are happening all around you.

The problem was that holidays were against pandemic restrictions. Instead, I gave up booze for the first sober holidays two and a half months of this year, a kind of extended Dry January holiday-from-my-lifestyle.

Tips To Stay Sober During The Holidays

Everyone is running on empty, and the annual fight is just waiting to happen. Consider giving yourself or your child the gift of sobriety by signing up for ayoung adult rehab https://ecosoberhouse.com/ programat Red Oaks Recovery. If you’re wary of being asked about why you’re not drinking, Whitmore suggests carrying around a mocktail and just not saying anything about it.

  • Instead of waiting for all of your friends to invite you to their next mixer or cocktail party, invite them to your sober celebration of the holidays.
  • Plan the whole thing in your mind, rehearse it, and when the time comes for the actual event, you’ll be prepared for it.
  • In fact, many groups have seasonal parties where food and fellowship abound and speakers talk of gratitude and of the real spirit of giving that is outlined in Step 12.
  • If they cannot join you, check-in before and after significant events with an accountability partner.

Why not take control of things and host your own event? It could be a small, intimate get-together with a few friends who support your wishes. Or doing something fun that doesn’t require alcohol. Have your support systems in place before the holiday season. Regardless of the time of year, it’s critical for anyone in recovery to have adequate support.

Avoiding Relapse

In fact, it is a good policy for those new to recovery. Especially in an environment that taxes your recovery plan. It is always prudent to have a sober friend on the ready – to call for advice or a ride home. This will be my 6th sober holiday season, but my loved ones know that when I say it’s time to go, it is time to go. The holiday season is meant to be a joyous occasion that brings family and friends together. But even in the midst of all the excitement, there are often moments of stress and anxiety.

sober holidays

For over 20 years Dr. Umhau was a senior clinical investigator at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism of the National Institutes of Health . Buddy T is an anonymous writer and founding member of the Online Al-Anon Outreach Committee with decades of experience writing about alcoholism. If you are sensing panic, anxiety, or a strong emotional and/or physical response at any moment, take a deep breath.

Stay Strong And Treat Yourself

Fill your time with positive moments instead of sitting at home, worrying about the next holiday social. As fun and joyous as the holidays can be, they often commence a challenging time for early in their recovery journey.

In your mind, you might think it’s blaringly obvious to the people around you that you’re choosing to be sober and that it’s a big deal for you. The spiritual aspects of forgiveness and letting go can be especially healing during the holiday season.

Our Day Job

Second, you can ask friends to accompany you to your holiday gatherings. Bringing a friend, even to a family gathering, isn’t out of the ordinary.

  • The holiday happy hours and beer advent calendars were too tempting to avoid.
  • Have a list of phone numbers, either of a sponsor, good friend or even the Alcoholics Anonymous helpline, so you can call someone when you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed.
  • While this isn’t the case in every situation, it is important to remember that everyone can play a role.
  • Here are 10 quick tips for maintaining your sobriety, and sanity, during the winter holidays and into the new year.
  • This includes rock climbing, weight training, running, road and mountain biking, and snow sports.

There are two major ways that your friends can help you. First, you can ask one of your sober friends to stay on call. Being able to turn to a friend when you experience alcohol cravings is very important. Here are four things experts say you should keep in mind for your own and your guests’ safety and well-being as you plan holiday gatherings.

Be thankful for your sobriety and the people in your life. Realize that overcoming addiction is something to be proud of.

For extra release, stick your tongue out as you exhale and make a “HAAAAAAA” sound, blowing out the air, the heat, and the stress.For a full tutorial check out this post. I originally wrote this post in 2014, and the irony is I stayed up until three in the morning on my sister’s couch in Los Angeles.

It is not always possible to completely avoid them, and not always completely necessary. If something could possibly hurt your recovery journey, it is important to honor where you are in the moment and make the uncomfortable decisions that may save your life.

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Your friends who abuse substances may have to celebrate without you this year. It is not worth the stress and confusion that could lead to relapse. Boundaries are important year-round, but during the holiday season can be more difficult to maintain.

The Ultimate Guide To Get Through The Holidays Sober

It’s easy to drive through a light display or visit a live Nativity scene. Several churches also offer support programs for people overcoming addiction.

Being able to pair your religious practices with your sobriety can often help you feel more secure in the process. Keep in mind that there’s no need to be ashamed of your past or the journey you’re on now. Is a force of healing and hope for individuals, families and communities affected by addiction to alcohol and other drugs. Through charitable support and a commitment to innovation, the Foundation is able to continually enhance care, research, programs and services, and help more people.

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