Part 2 of our installment on coping with the Holidays and Recovery.

Even though “tis the season”, for many for those in recovery these upcoming holidays can feel like a trying time when it revolves around being healthy and sober. Unrealistic expectations and over committing to people, places and things could have the costly result of encountering triggers and challenging one’s sobriety.
Here are some quick ideas that can help you prepare for possible challenges this holiday season:

Sober Strategies

  • Attend an AA meeting prior to going to any festivities.
  • Arrive earlier to a party and leave early.
  • “Bookend”; make a phone call to someone in recovery or your sponsor, before you reach your destination and once you leave.
  • Be aware of those people that are “very into the holiday spirit” and associate with people who you know won’t drink.

Attitude Adjustment and Thoughts

  • You are not the only one stressed during the holidays, everyone is, from planning and running around.
  • This day is no different than any other.
  • Focus on being positive and visualize what the next right thing is, you should be doing.

Help out

  • Connect with others by helping, use your strength in sobriety to volunteer for those that are less fortunate.
  • Avoiding known Risks. You are experienced enough to know where you should not be going, use your knowledge and stay away from people or places that you know you shouldn’t be going or that give you that “Gut Feeling”.

Change your Environment

If you feel that the holidays may be too difficult for you, then call an addiction treatment centre and see if there is availability for a few days to strengthen yourself.

John Mamajek
Lead Addictions Councillor
1000 Islands Addiction Rehab