Winter is a great time to reconnect with friends and family. The season is all about sharing and giving. If you are like others working through their sobriety, wintertime can also bring back enticing memories of alcohol-filled gatherings, holiday parties and snow days. If winter threatens to derail your recovery, a few tips from West Coast Recovery Centers may help you maintain healthy sobriety throughout the season.
Keep the Right Company
It may be tempting to seek out your old partying group for the winter season, but sticking with your sober buddies may be a better choice for keeping you on track. Your recovery gang can specifically look for fun seasonal activities that don’t have to involve alcohol, such as hiking, hitting a local farmer’s market or attending a movie. You can even use the weather to kick your body into shape, training for a 5k or simply making a new exercise program a habit at the gym.
Plan Ahead for Social Events
Despite your best efforts at avoidance, it is likely you will be obligated to attend at least one or two events in the winter where alcohol will be served. Plan ahead for these occasions by bringing another sober friend as a guest – make sure that friend is ready to handle the temptation as well. Arrive to the party late, and bring your own alcohol-free beverages when appropriate. Have an exit plan in mind as well if the temptation at the party becomes too great.
Don’t Skimp on Your Support
It may be tempting to skip a few meetings during those long, lazy days of winter, but the right support is just as important during this season as it is throughout the rest of the year. In addition, you may find that concerts and festivals you are interested in attending offer 12-step meetings or tents specifically designed to encourage your sobriety. Stick with your program throughout the season and you will be less likely to backslide during this time of year.
Brush Up on Relaxation
Winter is often a time to catch up on your relaxation, whether it is lolling near a fire with a good book or spending a little extra time at a table at your local coffee shop. Embrace the season by brushing up on your own relaxation skills. When you take some downtime all for yourself, it makes it that much easier to remain strong when temptations do arise.
Up Your Self-Care
In addition to taking time to relax, concentrate on maintaining positive self-care throughout the winter months. Now is a great time to fill your diet with fresh fare right from the garden and to get outside and get active with regular exercise. It is also important to get sufficient shut-eye every night and leave enough margin in your schedule for time to yourself to do the things that you simply love to do.
Winter can be a difficult time for those in recovery, as the season often brings back memories of parties and other alcohol-filled festivities. By planning ahead and having a few stop guards in place before the season arrives, you will be much more likely to make it through the winter months with your sobriety intact. To learn more about surviving winter or other challenging times of the year, contact West Coast Recovery Centers today at 855-927-2687.