How the Holiday Season Affects Your Sobriety
The holiday season is now upon us and with it comes many invitations to holiday parties. It is difficult to maintain your sobriety around those who drinking. The holiday season is stressful and many recovering addicts seek out a substance as a coping mechanism. Rather than let your hard work be for naught, seek out alternatives to cope and reduce the stress of the season.
Make a Plan
As with any change in your life, you must take it one day at a time. Every morning you will need to wake up and re-establish your resolve to stay sober. Come up with a plan for that day about how you will stay focused on your sobriety.
Before you head into a party or any stressful situation, assess the risk. Rank each as low, medium, or high and determine whether you are far enough in your sobriety to attend. Low-risk situations are great for those early in their sobriety but should avoid medium- or high-risk events.
Another aspect to assessing a situation is knowing your triggers. Understanding what can trigger a relapse will aid in managing them. Most of the time it is extreme emotions that will set off your desire to use such as feeling tired, lonely, angry, or hungry. Be sure to take care of yourself to avoid setting off your triggers.
Liquor is at nearly every single gathering you will attend. Rather than hope that your host will have an appropriate drink for your consumption, bring your own. Sparkling water or apple cider can take the place of champagne. Even if you bring juice or soda, your host will appreciate having extra on-hand.
Having a support system that you can rely upon is a key component to maintaining your sobriety all year long. Look to friends, family, support groups, or a sponsor for guidance during this stressful time.
At Sober Assistance , we help you reach a recovery specialist in your area. From substances abuse to eating disorder, we have the assistance you need to cope. Remember, you do not have to go it alone. To find a local resource center, search online using our site.
Around 1 in 10 Americans use alcohol or another type of mind-altering substance to cope with daily life. Here are just some of the signs that you or a loved-one has developed an addiction:
- Drinking Due to Emotional Highs and Lows or Consistently as a Way to De-Stress: An occasional drink after a stressful day is common, and so is an occasional celebratory one after good news. Yet when a person turns to alcohol or a substance to de-stress or to cope when experiencing charged emotions on a consistent basis, this is a sign of dependency.
- Legal Trouble Due to Alcohol Abuse: Charges such as a DUI, DWI, public intoxication, disorderly conduct, and domestic disturbances fueled by alcohol and substance use are just a few of the warning signs of the legal troubles that can accumulate over time if someone is struggling with addiction. Multiple occurrences of these can be a red flag.
- Repeatedly Neglecting Responsibilities or Relationships: Typically alcohol abuse can interfere with daily life, causing a frequent user to neglect more tasks at home and work because they are too altered to fully perform their responsibilities. Relationships often suffer neglect as well, causing those closest to the user to become frequently frustrated and baffled at their loved one’s behavior.
- Alcohol Use in Dangerous Situations: There are a few situations where alcohol is inappropriate to consume, and using under these circumstances can indicate a problem: drinking and driving, drinking and operating heavy machinery, drinking while supervising minors, drinking while on prescription medication that prohibits drinking, and drinking against the medical advice of a doctor.
If you or someone you love is experiencing these problems, we at Sober Assistance can help. Our mission is to make recovery possible for anyone who seeks it—we offer free resources and connect you to a variety of options. Reach out to us to see how we can help.