If you’re in recovery from alcohol addiction, the holiday season can be stressful. Whether you’re hosting an event or attending one, chances are you’ll need to socialize without consuming any alcoholic drinks. It is a challenging task, but it can be done! To help you navigate the upcoming holiday parties and events without consuming alcohol, we’ve put together some tips for making the most of your time.
Take Your Alcohol-Free Drinks
Many people with alcohol problems struggle to find ways to socialize without alcohol during the holiday season. Whether they are battling anxiety over being around those who drink, depression over thoughts of a loved one they have lost, or relapse, there are some tips to help minimize their feelings and triggers this holiday season.
Not drinking can be “a perfectly normal thing despite societal pressure.” Using non alcoholic spirits with traditional alcoholic beverages can make sober friends feel included and more confident in the celebratory atmosphere of a holiday party, he says.
Those sober during the holiday must also be careful about interacting with sober others. They should avoid making jokes about their sobriety or being unsupportive of it. Likewise, they should consider driving separately from the person they are with so that they can get home safely.
Avoid Hanging Around the Bar
The holiday season may be stressful. With family obligations and various celebrations, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and tempted to indulge in alcohol. The best way to avoid a social drinking binge is to be proactive about your choices. It includes planning how you will turn down another round of drinks, figuring out what beverages you’ll enjoy instead, and ensuring you have the support, people, and activities you need to have a safe and fun time without the need for alcohol.
One of the best ways to decompress from a long day is by relaxing hot bath or sipping on a nice cup of tea. Likewise, a brisk walk or a quick tour around the block will give your brain a break from over-stimulating chemicals that can lead to a hangover. The best part is that you’ll get more accomplished by doing the more mundane tasks with a newfound sense of calm than slogging it out through a bar crawl.
Try New Activities
Try doing something new if you’re feeling bored or a bit stuck. It doesn’t have to be a big adventure, but just trying something different can help you keep your life fresh and exciting.
Please list things you’ve always wanted but never had the chance to, and then do them! If you have friends and family you trust, ask them for ideas, too.
Creating new traditions and trying new activities can be a fun way to enjoy the holidays. These can be a lot more social than drinking and can also make the holiday season more enjoyable for your family. You can try new activities like baking, playing games, and cooking together. You can also try new alcoholic-free drinks. You can also do things you’ve never done, like ice skating or visiting an amusement park. You can even volunteer at a soup kitchen or food pantry. During the holidays, there are often gift drives to support children with parents struggling to afford gifts for them.
Create New Holiday Traditions
Holiday traditions are a great way to connect with loved ones and create special memories. However, they can also be a source of anxiety and stress for some people.
If you struggle to find joy in the holidays or feel overwhelmed, consider creating new traditions for the season. Some ideas include baking cookies, building gingerbread houses, or hosting a gift-exchange party with sober friends. Try to incorporate the culture of the family members you are with into your tradition. If you have children, ask them what they want to do and let them choose together. Another great idea is to have a box with slips of paper and pens where your friends or family can write down their favorite memories or gratitude for their loved ones. It can help shift perspective during the holidays and help with grieving.
You can also start a charity donation box or jar in the family’s name each year. Everyone can add cash to it throughout the year and then donate during the holidays.
Visualize Yourself There
The holidays are a fun time of year but can be stressful. It can be due to various reasons, including gift-giving, family dynamics, and strained relationships. It can also be difficult for those who struggle with addictions or have family members suffering from an alcohol or drug problem.
Luckily, there are ways to socialize without the use of alcohol. One such technique is visualization.
Visualization is simply a mental image of something that you want to happen. For instance, if you are trying to lose weight, you could envision yourself in a healthy state of mind and body. Visualization is an excellent way to de-stress and feels more in control of your life. By visualizing your goals, you are putting yourself in a position to achieve them.
Pick a quiet place to sit and focus on your goal to start the process. It is also a good idea to begin your visualization at the same time every day, or even night, to train your mind and your subconscious to associate your goal with that specific time of day.