Thanksgiving is right around the corner, marking the beginning of the holiday season. For most, Thanksgiving is a time to relax and celebrate with friends, family, and lots of food. As with most other holidays, alcohol usually plays a significant role in Thanksgiving celebrations. Navigating Thanksgiving without an alcoholic beverage in hand might feel like a daunting task, especially if it is your first sober holiday. For those in recovery, the holidays can be stressful, full of triggers that can lead to relapse. By falling back on the tools you learned in relapse prevention therapy, you can maintain your sobriety on Thanksgiving.
If you are worried about staying sober this holiday season, reach out to the team at Insight Recovery Centers. We can offer the extra support you need to maintain your sobriety on Thanksgiving and beyond. Call us at 703.592.6946 or reach out to us online.
Tips for Maintaining Sobriety on Thanksgiving
Successfully getting through addiction treatment takes time and hard work. Recovery is a lifelong journey, and you also have to work to maintain your sobriety and prevent relapse. Holidays like Thanksgiving often have many triggers, so relying on your sober community for extra support is especially important. With proper planning, you can be prepared for all possible situations. Following are some helpful tips to keep in mind:
- Go to a morning meeting – Starting the day off with a 12-step meeting will give you a boost of extra support and set the tone for your day.
- Have your transportation – This puts you in control of when you arrive and how long you stay. It also allows you the ability to leave if you are feeling too triggered.
- Practice self-care – Exercise and mindfulness will keep you feeling healthy and centered. Focus on your wants and needs, and do not overextend yourself. Remember that it is okay to say no.
- Be of service – In active addiction, you likely made some transgressions with family. Use this time together to be helpful. Offering to play with the kids, help with food prep or clean up will keep you occupied and demonstrate how you have changed.
- Avoid high-risk situations – If you know you cannot handle the stress of a particular gathering, turn down the invitation. If you do go, know your triggers. Have a script for why you are not drinking. Bring a non-alcoholic beverage and, if you can, a sober friend.
Most importantly, remember to rely on your support network. If you have a sponsor, talk with them before your gathering. Make arrangements with other sober friends who will know to take your call if needed.
Begin New Holiday Traditions That Support Your Sobriety
Living a life of recovery is more than just abstaining from using drugs or alcohol. Recovery is a lifelong process whereby you are constantly growing and evolving. Along the way, you will be faced with obstacles that may challenge your sobriety. Learning to stay aware of triggers and relying on newfound coping mechanisms are essential to maintaining sobriety.
Sometimes being with family and friends causes people to fall back into old patterns of thinking and behavior that put them at risk of relapse. Especially if your family is not supportive of your sobriety, the best choice is to avoid gatherings with them. Accepting that the holidays may look different for you now that you are sober can help pave the way to begin new traditions. Consider these suggestions:
- Host your own sober Thanksgiving
- Plan a trip or a day of pampering yourself
- Search online for sober events in your area
- Have a movie or TV marathon
- Make plans with other sober friends
Above all else, take time this Thanksgiving to be grateful for your sobriety.
Contact Insight Recovery Centers for Support During the Holidays
Completing substance abuse or addiction treatment marks the beginning of a lifelong journey of recovery. Finding support and resources to maintain your sobriety is essential. Holidays can be a stressful time full of triggers, especially early in sobriety. Insight Recovery Centers offers the extra support to help you get through challenging times. Contact us today at 703.592.6946 to learn more about our programs.