Sometimes even under the best of circumstances, holidays can be stressful time. There are obligations and expectations to meet, whether real or imagined. An important thing to remember is that you are not alone in your sobriety. If you are newly sober, find a sober friend or keep your sponsor’s number with you.
Summer is upon us, and the first holiday, the 4th of July is quickly approaching. Here are some helpful tips to help you have a clean and sober July 4th.
- Plan your parties. You don’t need to attend each party you’re invited to, so pick the ones you feel you’ll be most supported at as a sober person. Typically this also means going to the party with someone you trust.
- Prepare yourself mentally. Play the day and night through in your mind. Don’t obsess about it, but think about what you’ll say when someone offers you a drink.
- Be sure to practice the word, ‘No.’ It seems basic, but sometimes as newly sober people we feel we need to tell people we are in recovery. It isn’t necessary, especially when all you have to say is, “no, thank you.” If a person is persistent, which sometimes happens, walk away; you not drinking is an issue they need to deal with.
- Work to spend some time with close friends and family who supportive of you in recovery. Sometimes we have family members who are sober as well. Track them down and spend time with them. Ask for support!
- Having an exit strategy is helpful as well. Drive your own car, or go with someone who would be will to go at a moment’s notice. Also, be sure when you park your car, you are park it away from other vehicles. You don’t want to be boxed in and unable to leave.
- Finding new tradition to celebrate the holidays is always a great way to remove yourself from old habits.
- Avoiding H.A.L.T. is first and foremost on days like this. H = Hungry, A = Angry, L = Lonely, T = Tired. So, if you hungry, eat. If you are angry, talk to someone about it. If you experiencing loneliness, call a sober friend or go to a meeting. If you are tired, then take a nap or work to get a good night’s sleep.
- Live for today. Just take it easy and enjoy the day as it is. Think about just not drinking this day, and when tomorrow comes, deal with it then.
If we’ve been part of your recovery, or this is the first time you’ve been to our website, we hope these tips will help you. Please take our number, (888) 426-6086, with you. We hope you won’t need it, but if you do, please call!