20 Dec 2021

How to enjoy the holiday season while in recovery

The winter holidays are a more difficult time to maintain sobriety, and it’s not easy the rest of the year. Although, Christmas has a religious significance to it, it is widely celebrated with egg nog. New Year’s Eve brings champagne, and Chanukah the wine. These popular holidays are only the tip of the winter celebration iceberg, and almost all holidays are full of toasts. However, this is not a recipe for a disaster and recovering alcoholicscan still have a joyous season without returning to drinking and backsliding.

Going into the holiday season, ramp up meeting attendance. Reach out to your recovery network, call your sponsor, and review recovery literature. You are not alone in this struggle this holiday season. There are many recovering alcoholics facing the same stresses and challenges. If you can’t physically get to a meeting, try joining an online recovery community that you can access from anywhere.

Create new traditions for the holidays. In the past, drinking was a part of the holiday tradition, and traditions are important to people. This year, replace it with something new. Whether it is listening to a special album while wrapping gifts or journaling on your down time. A gratitude journal will instill the spirit of the season and can relieve stress.

Now is a great time to talk to loved ones about your recovery. Share the good news of how far you have come, and share your concerns. Create a safe space and discuss the ongoing struggle of recovery, especially during this time of year. Family and friends need to know these things to be able to provide you with support. People currently in rehab over the holiday season may especially miss close ones now. However, the holiday spirit still flows in inpatient programs, as they are close communities of people sharing similar experiences.