With the summer season in full tilt, it’s not uncommon to find yourself enjoying a weekend BBQ, picnic, vacation, beach trip or summer social gathering. For those of us in recovery, these situations can be difficult to swallow when alcohol is involved. In this entry, we’ve included a few tips to help maintain sobriety and minimize your stress throughout the summer season.
Sober Vacation Tips
1 – If you have been invited to an event where alcohol will be present, it’s important to ask yourself whether or not you are ready to be around alcohol. Will you be able to avoid peer pressure? Can you focus your attention on activities at the event that will not cater to your alcohol addiction? If you doubt your ability to cope in a positive manner, you may be better off declining the invitation.
2 – If you do choose to attend the event, it’s important to prepare yourself for the inevitable – declining alcohol that is offered to you. Those trying to be friendly and accommodating may offer you a drink without an awareness of your commitment to sobriety. A simple smile and “no, thank you.” should be sufficient.
3 – Keep your hands occupied! Bring a soda or bottled water to the event and grab a refill once you’re through. You know what they say about idle hands”¦
4 – Consider bringing a sober friend along to the event. This will lessen the temptation to drink while stabilizing your confidence levels. Not only will you no longer be the odd-man-out; you will have someone by your side who is able to discourage temptation if it happens to arise.
5 – Don’t push it. If you find yourself in an uncomfortable spot, there’s no shame in leaving the situation. Simply thank the host for the invite, say your goodbyes, and head out the door. If the urges persist, a quick call to a friend, sponsor, or a visit to the next AA meeting is recommended.