Sobriety Tips For The Holidays
Between Kwanzaa, Hanukkah and Christmas, this weekend marks the start of several major holidays. And with that, comes continued temptations to use. Whether it’s to “join in” on alcoholic celebrations or find an escape mechanism from a difficult family situation, December is famous for seeing an increase in addiction relapses. That’s why, for this blog, we wanted to provide support and a few helpful tips to maintain sobriety from now until the new year.
Maintain A Strong Support System
During times of temptation, we highly recommend having your support system close by. Whether it’s a sponsor, a recovery comrade or family member who has been by your side; keep them on speed dial and be ready to make that call if you sense any negative urges occurring. If possible, try inviting them to join you at your next holiday party. You’d be surprised to see what a positive impact it can have.
Rehearse Your Responses
It never hurts to have a pre-planned script handy before entering a holiday party. If you have a strong feeling that alcohol (or negative temptations) are going to be present, spell out in your mind the exact words you want to use when you refuse. If you take some time to think through various scenarios before they occur, you will feel much more comfortable saying no and maneuvering through the appropriate reactions.
Stay Well Fed
This may be interesting to hear, but a full belly can actually help you maintain your sobriety (especially during this time of year). So, go ahead and enjoy an extra helping at the dinner table. Statistics have shown that empty stomachs and low blood sugar can leave your irritable and impulsive, thus more willing to use.
Take Time For Charity Work
We all know that the holidays are a time for giving back. So why not keep with the spirit of the season? Truth be told, charity work can be a very “sobering” experience, especially if you take time to volunteer at somewhere like a homeless shelter. Servicing people in need can help put things in perspective and allow you to appreciate (and hopefully maintain) your sobriety.
Keeping an ongoing schedule during this time of year can also be very beneficial. If you can plot each day, it will help provide structure and keep you out of unexpected and potentially dangerous situations. Try to fill your time with activities that stray away from drugs and alcohol (our Sober SoCal Weekends help for this) and before you know it, you’ll be well into the new year.
If You Need Help, Get It
And finally, if the temptations are just too strong this time of year then just recognize it and take action. There is absolutely nothing wrong with addiction vulnerabilities during the holidays. The important thing is to stop them before they begin. Valley Recovery Center operators are available seven days a week (even on Christmas) and can be that support system if you need. If now is the time to check in to a treatment program, do not hesitate. Give us a call at (866) 986-2486 and let us handle the rest.