If this is your first Christmas sober, you may be approaching the holiday season with a touch of trepidation. This is a time of year when getting drunk becomes far more acceptable, and even social drinkers will tend to go a bit overboard. How will deal with this increased pressure to drink? Will you spend the holiday feeling like you are missing out? How can you enjoy Christmas without alcohol to put you in the right mood?
Here are a few tips to help you stay sober over the Christmas period:
Even if you are not a big fan of the recovery meetings, it is worth making an effort to go at this time of year. It means you will be around lots of other people who are having a sober Christmas, and you will gain strength from their support and experience. Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous also usually have parties at this time of year, so you can get to let your hair down in a safe environment.
If you are still in early recovery, it is best to avoid high-risk situations as much as possible, but this can be hard to do over the holiday season. There may be some type of work function that you are obliged to attend. In this type of situation, it is best to make a brief appearance and leave before people get too intoxicated. It can also be helpful to bring along a sober friend for support – just make sure this person has solid sobriety or you could be both putting your recovery at risk.
You can still enjoy the holiday season despite the fact that you are not drinking – in fact, don’t be surprised if this is your best Christmas ever.
The fact that you are not used to being sober at this time of year means you will have to do some research, but there many fun activities over the holidays that don’t involve drinking alcohol.
One of the most positive things you can do is to create some new sober Christmas traditions. This could include things like inviting some non-drinking friends around for a party, going for a walk in nature, devoting time to meditation, writing a gratitude list, or attending a religious service – the options are only limited by your imagination. The benefit of having these traditions is they will start to signify what Christmas means you, just like alcohol once did.