Most people have their favorite holiday, and many choose that week-long stretch at the end of every year that encompasses Christmas and New Year’s. For someone who’s in recovery from drugs or alcohol, however, these few days can be the most trying of the year. If you’re worried about staying sober New Year’s, contact an Oregon Men’s Rehab Center, such as Crestview Recovery in Portland, for help.
Staying Sober New Year’s
Loneliness is a big stressor during Christmas and New Year’s. If you don’t have that big, organic family to cater to, or that caters to you, watching others enjoy it can just be depressing. Feeling pushed into meeting holiday obligations is another stressor, especially for those who are normally shy in groups or those who have suffered losses throughout the year. Losing your job, your marriage, or your home aren’t exactly conducive to celebration, and those big, holiday parties have a way of going forward, regardless of how much you dread them. Staying in touch with your mentor or counselor can be especially helpful for staving off relapse during the holidays, so can these other tips we’ve compiled to help you meet your goal of staying sober New Year’s:
Be Good to Yourself
- The holidays are a good time to expend extra effort looking out for yourself, especially when you’re in recovery from drug or alcohol addiction. Make the time to stay in touch with the sober, positive people in your life. Keep those you can’t live without, such as your mentor or sponsor, pastor, or therapist on speed dial. Don’t allow yourself to become overly tired or overly stressed this New Year’s. Most of all, keep your favorite non-alcoholic drinks nearby at all times to avoid temptation. Feeling good and being true to yourself are helpful for staying sober New Year’s.
Don’t Become an Island
Avoiding those big, New Year’s parties that positively reek of scotch is understandable. Do not isolate yourself from all the fun simply because you’re a recovering alcoholic. Consider throwing your own party, if you’re worried that temptation will be too great. Invite those friends and family members who understand your struggle, and emphasize food and snacks over alcoholic drinks. If you do decide to party-hop this year, bring your own drink and keep one in your hand at all times to discourage others from trying to top off your glass or bring you a bottle from the kitchen.
- True friends will understand when you stand up for yourself by saying no. Say no to alcoholic drinks and to meetings at the bar down the street. Don’t go to those holiday events that you worry will overwhelm you with temptation, and say no to those buddies who can’t have a conversation without a beer in their hands. Say no firmly and without apology or explanation, and then say it again. The people who truly love and care about you won’t ask twice.
Seek Out Companionship
- Maybe you don’t have a big, supportive family to turn to. Many of us don’t. Maybe you lost most of your friends when you decided a sober life was better than drunken good times. Everyone in recovery has suffered this loss. What’s key is to make sure you stay connected, especially over Christmas and New Year’s. Ramp up attendance to your AA meetings if you’re beginning to feel gloomy and alone. There may be an alcathon happening in your area during New Year’s. Even if it’s not your usual crowd, you’ll be welcome there. Go, mingle, and meet others who will help you stay sober New Year’s.
If you find yourself struggling more than you can bear this holiday season, Crestview Recovery in Portland is available to help. We’ll help you achieve and maintain recovery from drugs or alcohol, even throughout the holidays. Call us today at 866.262.0531 for more information on our drug and alcohol treatment program in OR.
The holidays should be a fun and stress-free time for everyone, even those actively practicing recovery. If you use the tips listed here to help you get through, there will be no need to dread New Year’s this time around.