It’s not easy to describe this year’s holiday season. People are working together to coordinate travel, meals, gifts, and time off work in the best of situations. People are trying to figure out how to cope with holiday stressors and stay safe from the Covid-19 virus.
People in recovery face a lot of pressure this year. Many people in recovery may be facing their first sober holiday for years, and now they are dealing with the disappointment of missing out on family or friends. Others may be still in treatment and are not looking forward celebrating at a halfway house or treatment center.
It can be difficult to travel without alcohol or drugs. It can be difficult to see the solutions and focus on the problems without the same support network that you had pre-pandemic. These are ten great tips to help you plan a memorable 2018.
1. Technology can be fully used
Zoom is a popular video calling service that we all hate. Facetime and video calling your family is a good idea. Text. Use the phone. Use Facebook messenger. Remember that the people you love can be reached by just a phone call. Make the most of technology’s potential. Most hospitals will allow you to make phone calls while you are in treatment. Be sure to ask about this!
Online meetings of the AA, NA or CA are a great way to meet people. It’s even better to go to a meeting in your area. An “Alcathon” is a 24-hour-long tradition in AA. It involves 24 hours of uninterrupted meetings at one place. Many groups do this virtually because of Covid-19.
2. Even if they’re virtual, you can create your own sober traditions
Reorganize your thinking. Now you have the chance to create your own sober traditions, and begin your new day. There are no rules. You can order Chinese food as an alternative to a turkey. Have an ice cream party instead of a dinner gathering.
Think outside the box. What can you do to make you feel connected? Maybe it’s a movie that you can share with your friends online. Perhaps it’s a college or pro football game to catch up on. If you are unable to attend your favorite football game, why not host a tailgate at your home?
You might also consider creating a meaningful tradition of sobriety for yourself. You might donate one dollar per year that you’re sober to a cause you care about.
3. Ask for assistance from professionals.
Even in the best of situations, holidays can be difficult. You may be able to get professional support if you are currently in treatment or are in recovery. These resources may be available to you if you have them.
If you are a member of AA or NA, call your sponsor. Meet up for coffee outside to share your support. Your sponsor is also going through these holidays sober.
4. Keep busy
Many people believe that the main problem of an alcoholic is their mind. Too much time can cause sadness, regret, resentment and the desire to drink or use. Do not just sit idle. Instead, create a list of activities that will keep you busy and active. You will be able to divert your attention from negative thoughts and actions. Move a muscle, change a thought!
5. Find a great new show to binge
This is the perfect moment to lose yourself in a great television series. On-demand entertainment options make it easy to get lost in a fictional universe. Do you long to be able to relax on the couch and watch a great show for eight hours? This is it. Go to the movies or a TV show that you love and binge watch it.
Get plenty of exercise. Exercise can be beneficial for anyone, but it is especially helpful for those in recovery. Exercise can alter the chemical levels in your brain and make you feel happier. It can also help with feelings of sadness or loneliness that can be caused by holidays. Get as much exercise in this year’s holiday season as you can. You don’t need to do a lot of weight lifting, but even a short walk can make you feel better.
Many non-profits need your help with Covid-19. Find out if there’s a way to volunteer. Are you aware of an animal shelter in need? A blood bank Soup kitchen? You can help the world by supporting good causes.
Volunteering is an excellent way to increase your gratitude. Even if you are unable to travel with your family, you can still practice gratitude for the people who help in a soup kitchen and food pantry. Another way to increase your gratitude is to remind yourself that you aren’t alone.
8. Digital entertainment
There have been many articles about how digital entertainment can make us feel connected even in this time of pandemic. This is the ideal time to use digital entertainment to connect with others if you’re a gamer. This is a great way to have fun and keep your mind occupied.
9. Pamper yourself
After you have accepted how difficult this day can be, you need to do your best to take care of yourself. It may be different for different people. You might go on a mini-business buying spree or get that haircut you have been wanting. Do it with kindness, no matter what. Do not be discouraged by your failures or the difficulties that recovery has presented. Treat yourself with kindness and be kind to yourself.
It is one of the worst things that can happen is to wake up on a holiday morning, realize it is a holiday and then come to the realization that there is no plan to get you through the day. You don’t have to create a plan in writing. However, you need to have a plan for how you will get through the day. This should include a list of activities you want to do and who you can call for help if you feel overwhelmed.
Even though holidays can be difficult for anyone in recovery at this time, it can be a nightmare for many. There are proven strategies that will help you get through the holidays. These ten tips will help you get there. This is what you have.
All In Solutions Counseling Center is a behavioral health network specializing in addiction treatment. We offer outpatient and inpatient substance abuse treatment programs that are individualized to meet each client’s needs. Our specialized programs include:
- Faith-based addiction recovery
- Medication assisted opiate treatment
- Art therapy addiction recovery
- Men’s addiction treatment
- Women’s drug rehab
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