Maintaining Your Sobriety During the Holidays With the holiday season quickly approaching, Addiction No More would like to help you understand the importance of preparing for these holidays while maintaining your sobriety. The holiday season can be a difficult time of year for many who are trying to maintain their sobriety during Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve. Many different dynamics can be happening at the same time including family difficulties, preparing for guests, and having to be around people that are not sober. This can be a difficult time for most people in early sobriety or even long-term sobriety. Our goal is to help you navigate the holiday season successfully and give you the tools needed to ensure your sobriety does not end with the holidays.
We recommend that you create a plan that includes attending local meetings, staying in touch with your recovery support circle, and avoiding triggers that can cause you to relapse. Remember to embrace your holiday season with sober activities that bring happiness and joy to your life, including spending quality time with those who support your sobriety, finding sober activities to enjoy, or even starting a new hobby to help enjoy your time. Always remember to prioritize your well-being and set boundaries to protect your sobriety. We here at Addiction No More wish you a very happy and sober holiday season.
Avoiding triggers and environments that are not healthy for your sobriety.
Taking control of your sobriety is one of the most important steps in recovery, this includes identifying triggers and places that can have a negative impact on your mental health. Identifying triggers can include reflecting on past experiences and patterns that have caused a relapse or made you feel uncomfortable. Once the triggers have been found creating a plan to handle them is crucial for maintaining sobriety. Setting boundaries with friends and family members can help. You can even decline invitations to get-togethers that may be triggering, or have an exit plan in place if the situation is causing you to feel uncomfortable. Finding supportive and sober activities can help you enjoy the holiday spirit without triggers. By making proactive choices and using the available resources you can maintain sobriety and prioritize recovery during the holidays.
Have a support system in place.Having a strong support system is very important during the holiday season for maintaining your sobriety. Support is one of the foundations for long-lasting recovery and having someone that understands your journey by your side can help. Recovery meetings can help people find like-minded individuals who will offer support and ideas that have helped them stay sober during past holiday seasons. Getting into an outpatient counseling program can also be a good idea during the holiday season for that little extra help and support. Sometimes we may need an exit plan to help us leave uncomfortable situations without causing a scene. This can be as simple as saying you have to leave to go pick someone up, saying that a friend has a flat tire, or any other excuse you might use to get out of work or an uncomfortable situation. Honesty is always the best policy but sometimes it is better not to escalate things in certain situations.
Communicate with your family and loved ones.Communicating with loved ones and family members before the holidays will help them understand the triggers that may endanger your sobriety. We also suggest that you let your recovery group know that this time of year can be hard for you so you may need a bit more support from them during the holidays. Recovery groups are there for support and understanding and even some tough love when needed so use them and keep on track this year. It is very important to address your boundaries with friends and family, especially regarding alcohol, and ask them to help you by having a sober and supportive holiday celebration. You may need to decline invitations to get-togethers that are not having a sober holiday party. And that is ok. Do not be afraid to tell people that you are not comfortable attending parties that include drinking or substance use. Normalize your sobriety and people will understand that you are not avoiding them but the situation to ensure your own sobriety.
Always remember that you are a good person and be kind to yourself in deeds and thoughts while acknowledging that the holiday season can be challenging. Get in touch with your support group when needed, celebrate your recovery milestones, and practice self-compassion. Successful recovery can require ongoing help and support even years after completing a recovery program. Do not try and do everything on your own, get support from friends, family, and recovery groups. Be honest with them and discuss your triggers as this will give them a better understanding of your current recovery goals and pitfalls that could end your sobriety.
Have a great sober holiday season.