Summertime is in full swing, which means fun outings are about to ramp up for people across the country. Unfortunately, unhealthy temptations for people in drug and alcohol addiction recovery are likely to increase as well. If you’re fighting an addiction and are worried that there could be risks to your sobriety due to summertime activities, then please review this quick list of tips for staying sober at the peak of summer.
Five tips for staying sober during the summer are:
- Stay with a supportive friend: An important part of any substance addiction recovery plan is to have people you can lean on when the going gets tough. For the summer, keep in touch with a supportive friend who knows about what you are going through and what can risk your sobriety. If you go to a BBQ, pool party, or a day at the beach, then you should try to go with that friend. They can be an extra leg of support if there are temptations at the party. You can also talk with them before attending about an “escape plan” if you have to leave the party suddenly because you’re afraid your sobriety could slip.
- Be your own party host: Of course, if you are worried about a summer party having too many temptations around, then you can plan on hosting your own. Invite people who understand it is a dry party, so you don’t risk anyone showing up with a “gift” of alcohol that ends up being a big problem instead. With the right friends, everyone can still have plenty of summertime fun without the need for recreational drugs or alcohol.
- Hold onto a cup: If you do find yourself at a party that you didn’t design, then you can utilize one of the best party sobriety tricks: keeping a cup of nonalcoholic beverage in your hand at all times. You are far less likely to seek out a drink if you already have one in your hand. Just the sensation of holding onto a cup at a party can subconsciously make you feel included and eliminate any bothersome feelings of being “left out” of the fun. Strangers who don’t know you are working on an alcohol addiction recovery will also be less likely to ask you if you want a drink if they see you already have a cup.
- See something new: The summertime is a good time for a road trip, especially if you are in an addiction recovery program. Familiar faces and places can trigger old feelings and responses in you simply due to their familiarity. For example, if you go to the same beach that you visited years ago while you were drinking, then just being there might tempt you to grab a beer. To eliminate the risk of familiar temptations, you can use the summer as a reason to go see new places, where you can form new memories on your path to lasting sobriety.
- Keep up with your recovery plan: No matter what plans you want to make for the summer, you have to prioritize your addiction recovery plan. Lapsing on a single step or day of your plan could be a serious concern depending on where you are in your plan and how confident you are in your abilities to resume your plan later. To avoid that risk, stay atop your recovery plan, just like you would in any other season.