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Guide on How to Stay Sober During the Holidays

Some triggers can be more general, like being at a bar, while others can be very personal to your own experience—i.e. One of the ways you can keep yourself on the right track is by forging or leaning on meaningful connections you have with loved ones in your life. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is considered the “gold standard” psychotherapy for anxiety and depression, an… Having a support system can allow you to voice your struggles and frustrations to people who are non-judgemental, caring, and are legit there for you no matter what. Now that you know the basics and what is recommended in terms of who to surround yourself when, learn about the benefits of having a support system when in recovery.

When things get tough, your plan can include action items such as calling another sober friend, going to a meeting, exercising ormeditating. Bookending is another way for people in recovery to hold themselves accountable during the holidays. It works by the person in recovery checking in with someone from their support network before arriving at the event and sober holidays again after leaving the event. The support person can be a sponsor, a family member, or a friend that is reliable. For those who just started their recovery journey holiday parties with family or at work can give off a sense of loss or fear of missing out. These feelings can evoke anxiousness and depression if not properly supported during the holidays.

How to Keep Your Sobriety during the Holiday Season

The bad things that creep up in between can be handled. You’re a strong person, and you have already accomplished a lot. If you steer the conversation in the direction you want it to go in, you won’t ever have to worry about people asking about the drink in your hand. You can help people who are affected by alcoholism by making a donation to the Cleveland District Office. Her mother-in-law makes hateful comments in Julie’s direction regarding everything from her parenting to her weight. Julie is often criticized for her husband’s mistakes within his family. She’s seen as the reason he drinks and gets in trouble.

Use these tools to help your holidays stay merry, bright, and alcohol-free. In all the Christmas stories, Santa needs the help of his elves and reindeer to make the holidays a success, and you need a support team, too. Make a list of people you can call on if times get tough and you need to talk about your feelings. These could be friends, family members, your counselor or sponsor, or members of your support group. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Avoiding Relapse

This type of stress can lead us to rationalize and convince ourselves we are entitled to a drink. Instead, surround yourself with supportive loved ones that will help you follow the steps to staying clean and sober. Some families might consider the holidays an inappropriate time to help a loved one get into addiction treatment when, in fact, it could be an ideal opportunity. For many of the reasons mentioned earlier, substance abuse tends to ramp up over the holidays. Addiction treatment initiated during the holidays could be the best gift you give to your family, your friends and yourself. For many of us, the holidays are a season of peace and joy, where we decorate our memories with calm and happy moments. Dear Steve and Pete, I enjoy my time here at Discovery Institute.

Simply saying hello or offering to help with a task can spark conversation. Managing stress is always a challenge, and this is especially true during the holidays. This is the time of year when people extend themselves financially, emotionally and physically in order to please others and fulfill holiday expectations. But there’s never a better time to do this than the holidays.

How to Stay Sober and Sane During the Holidays When You Have a Perfectly Imperfect Family

You may also want to explore the possibility of staying in a sober living house to reinforce your recovery. A new, dependency-free life calls for new holiday traditions.

Develop a plan to protect your sobriety ahead of any holiday event and activity that could potentially trigger relapse to substance abuse. One of the most challenging struggle for people trying to stay sober is how to decline a drink offer politely.

Ways to Help You Keep Loving Someone With an Addiction

Follow our top 8 tips for enjoying the holidays with less stress and fewer complications. If you are living in an area where you don’t have much friends and family, attending local holiday events is a great way to integrate yourself socially. If your town or city is hosting a Christmas parade or a bazaar, try to find out how you can be of help.

  • Drinking has emboldened me linguistically, helped forge new friendships and papered over the cracks in old ones.
  • Maintain your recovery routine as much as possible.
  • For each event that you successfully get through, reward yourself with a brunch date with a good friend or buy yourself that book you’ve wanted.
  • Parties don’t have to be off the market if you’re trying to stay sober.
  • Dealing with the “holiday blues” or sadness in sobriety can be challenging.

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. If you have practiced religion in the past and want to return or strengthen it, this could be a good time to dive right in. No celebration will be the picture-perfect example of what a sober holiday should be. The holidays are not a time to hold on to resentment. Don’t allow someone you dislike or have a hard time seeing get in your head. Holding onto grudges can hold us back from making true progress and enjoying what’s supposed to be a time of love and selfless giving.

If you like to make lists to keep track of errands and plans, make sure your list is up to date. Layout your schedule as it stands, with your existing routines blocked in. Where you are forced to do something else instead, make a note of how many other things that day are still part of your routine.

Holiday Season – Texas Department of Transportation

Holiday Season.

Posted: Tue, 30 Aug 2022 06:36:35 GMT [source]

The range of emotions that you experience during the holidays can feel overwhelming. For example, you might feel stressed due to the financial burdens of the season. Or, feel depressed if you are experiencing the winter blues due to the cold season. One way to prepare yourself for these situations is to practice ways of saying « no. » Think about ways that you would refuse offers for drinks or other substances. You can even do this out loud at home by yourself or with a loved one. For these reasons, maintaining your sobriety can seem exceptionally difficult during the holiday season.

Next time you’re standing in a crowded home thinking you’re the only one struggling to deny yourself a sip, think again. Find out about the special holiday parties, meetings, or other celebrations given by groups in your area, and go. When all else fails, remember why you started this journey. As the holidays roll around, it might help to write down a daily gratitude list to remind you why you aregrateful for your sobrietyand why recovery is worth it to you. Luckily, Into Action has options for dealing with your family holiday without sacrificing your sobriety or sanity.

  • If you’re new to sobriety, read more about how to stay sober for the Fourth of July.
  • Staying sober during the holidays is no easy task, especially since this time of year can be stressful.
  • As you are in pursuit of your best life through sobriety, know that you deserve that pursuit, and you deserve your recovery.
  • Big changes, small changes—all of it can best be met with an arsenal of coping skills, strategies, and a plan for staying sober during the holidays.
  • For many of us, the holidays are a season of peace and joy, where we decorate our memories with calm and happy moments.

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