Question: What can I do to prevent relapse during the holiday season?
Answer: No matter how long someone has been sober nearly all substance abuse professionals will tell a recovering alcoholic to have some sort of relapse prevention plan laid out for the holiday season.
Here are some great tips:
- One of the more important tips is to just slow down over the holidays. Take quiet time for yourself; daily mediation for even just a few minutes is more helpful than you would think.
- Another great way to prevent relapse so you don’t need to enter an alcohol detox after the holidays is to make sure you have a good support system in place; mainly those who are in recovery, like a sponsor or fellow recovering addicts.
- This is a wonderful time to reinforce the foundation of your sobriety by attending some additional meetings. Remember, you are the most important person to take care of. If you do then all else will fall into place.
Question: How about just hanging by myself? Won’t that work?
Answer: Well, no actually. It might seem like a great idea because you won’t have to deal with any stressful situations, but that only leads to isolation and isolation will surely lead to relapse. If you truly need to stay away from family members or friends you think will create stress then find some people who are not active substance abusers, like those in Alcoholics Anonymous.
Question: What’s the number one offender of relapse that might put me back in an alcohol detox?
Answer: According to the Big Book of ‘Alcoholics Anonymous,’ the number one offender that leads to relapse (and a possible repeat of an alcohol detox) is resentment. Defined on Dictionary.com, resentment is the feeling of displeasure or indignation at some act, remark, or person that is regarded as causing injury or insult. These can stem from irritation, envy and even jealousy. It has also been described as someone ‘renting space in your head – rent-free.’ Avoid resentment as much as you can!
The holidays are undeniably stressful for everyone. Give yourself the time to enjoy them by pacing yourself. Staying clean and sober will ensure your holiday season to be truly joyful.