5 Ways to Stay Sober and Safe This New Year’s
For many, the holidays are a time for family fun and being around the ones we love. However, for individuals in recovery, this time of year — and New Year’s Eve in particular — can be difficult. Not only are people surrounded by others who are drinking or using drugs recreationally, but the stress and anxiety that accompanies the holiday — seeing family, fears about the coming year, buying gifts, and other financial concerns — can lead to temptation and even relapse. In other cases, the fact that so many of us are alone this holiday season and unable to connect with the ones we love can have the same effect.
With a little bit of forethought, you can be prepared to stay sober and safe this holiday, no matter where you are on your recovery journey. No matter what you may face, it is important to stay flexible about plans, people, and places. But one thing you should not be flexible about is your recovery program and remaining clean and sober this holiday season.
Expecting the Unexpected
Before moving on to our specific advice for staying sober this holiday season, there is one general rule to follow: be prepared for whatever may happen. This means sitting down with yourself — perhaps before you have even finalized your plans — and reflecting on:
- What is expected of me?
- This relates to what you know will happen. Where you will be, whom you will be with, your time constraints, and even the required attire.
- What may happen that is unexpected?
- This relates to things that may come up that are out of your control. What will you do when you are inevitably offered a drink? What if you need to leave early? When planning your evening, a little bit of forethought can go a long way.
5 Ways to Stay Sober This New Year’s
As we have mentioned, the most important thing is that you have an action plan for combating cravings and temptations to use drugs and alcohol on New Year’s Eve. Among the ways that you can get your New Year’s Eve off on the right foot are:
- Stay accountable – Have a contact plan with your sponsor or other sober supports.
- Don’t stop your routines – Keep your routine up even through the holiday. Chaos is the hallmark of addiction.
- Hang out with sober supports/friends – “Birds of a feather flock together” is the statement that would apply to this coping skill.
- Make healthy decisions – Keep your side of the street clean. Double-check your decisions with someone you trust when you are unsure.
- Stay aware – Never take your recovery for granted. You worked hard getting clean and sober. Now protect it as if your life depended on it — because it just may.
This list is by no means comprehensive, and we encourage you to personalize our suggestions to fit your specific needs. Additionally, check out our alumni department website to see what events and meetings Lakeview Health offers to help you stay sober through the new year.
Learn More at Lakeview Health
If you are interested in learning more about recovery — either for yourself or for someone close to you — Lakeview Health in Jacksonville, FL, is an excellent place to start. If you are only beginning your recovery journey, we are here to help. And if you have already relapsed, we can help you pick up the pieces and get you back on track.
The holiday time is not easy, and for many, it is the most tempting time of year. Don’t keep using drugs and alcohol. It’s not fair to those who love you that you choose that path. Going to an addiction treatment center to start the new year fresh is an excellent choice. Lakeview Health is here to help you get started. Reach out to us online today or call 866.704.7692, and we will help you get into our program today.