Maintaining a social life and continuing successful sobriety can be difficult to alcoholics and addicts alike. Many choose to refrain from hanging out or meeting up with friends in fear that they may jeopardize the hard work and investment put into their recovery.
Isolation Doesn’t Equal Solution
While alienation may seem like the easiest solution, this isolation can be harmful to oneself and can often distance even the closest of relationships. Find ways to involve and share yourself into others lives, as well as theirs into yours.
Honesty Continues Growth
Try to be open about why you won’t be going to the bar or joining in at a weekend bbq. This honesty can harness personal boundaries while also developing trust. Be sure to engage in activities with those close to you, away from places alcohol or drugs are involved, to grow these friendships.
Sober Activities To Do With Friends:
- Ice Skating
- Sports (Basketball, Frisbee, Play Catch)
- Dog Park
When Your Presence Is Required
While common social outings may be easy to avoid and replace with sober activities, the holiday season usually brings about more required appearances; Christmas dinner, Christmas Parties, New Year’s Eve events, Friends and Family get-togethers, Work parties, even Neighborhood shindigs, all pose a potential threat to sobriety.
Here are some tips to stay sober during these holiday events:
Tip 1 – Attend AA Meetings leading up to the party
Opening up to others along the same journey will help you remain accountable and sober until the next meeting.
Tip 2 – Text or Call your Sponsor to check in
Reach out before, after…during? We all have limits, know yours and be prepared if you feel like slipping.
Tip 3 – Be Realistic and Listen to Yourself
If you know after an hour or two your inhibitions are likely to wain…leave! No one is holding you hostage (well except maybe substances are trying)…but we are stronger than that.
Tip 4 – Invite a Sober Companion
Not everybody wants to use at these events. Find someone who would also like to be sober and take them along.
Tip 5 – Bring a Non-Alcoholic Drink You Like
Seltzer Water with a lemon twist will deter almost anybody from questioning your “involvement”. Maybe you prefer a soda pop and some will ask, “what are you drinking?”, snidely reply, “a Virgin Rum & Coke” 😀 Honest sobriety doesn’t have to be boring.
Tip 6 – Commit to being the Designated Driver (DD)
Creating a responsibility that requires sobriety makes answering questions like; “Want to do shot’s?”, “Why aren’t you drinking?”, “Party Favors?” easier to handle. Making sure others get home safely is a great response to these triggers.
Tip 7 – Get a better understanding of Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO)
Prevalent throughout society is a distracting and focus inhibiting anxiety developed from what our friends and coworkers might be up to while you’re busy with work projects, assignments, and other responsibilities. Hearing stories of the events you’ve missed the next day at work or school feeds this stressful curiosity. Social Media and apps like Snapchat, give us instant looks into what everyone is doing when we aren’t there, even furthering these debilitating worries.
Helping Yourself & Others This Season
The holidays can bring great joy and for some even greater regret. While finding your support system is very important, also try to reach out to others. Help them along their journey so that we can all have a successful and sober end to 2018 and start to 2019.