The holiday season means love and cheer and booze and parties and drinking and more booze. And before you know it, January is around the corner, there’s a new year ahead of you, and it’s time to be sober again. Sometimes, making the transition to full-time sobriety is easy, but for others, it’s the beginning of a slippery slope that can ultimately lead to dependence and addiction. Here are 7 tips for staying sober during this time.
1: Enlist Help
It’s not just you holding yourself accountable, it’s your friends too. You don’t have to go it alone if you don’t want to. And honestly, why should you have to? It won’t be easy, but with help from the people around you, you can be stronger in your resolve to maintain sobriety. And if it becomes a bigger problem, read more about finding support from a clinic.
2: Know Your Enemy
There are lots of people out there who want to see you fail, but mostly it’s just you trying to sabotage yourself. So know thyself and stay ahead of the game by setting boundaries you won’t allow yourself to cross.
3: Have Fun!
One of the best ways to stay sober is never to stop having fun, which doesn’t mean you need to be all serious and straight-laced about everything. You can still go out with your friends or meet new people, but just stay away from the bar scene. Try other activities like sports, dancing, or concerts. You can still go out and have a good time without drinking as long as you make the effort.
4: Stay Busy
There’s nothing wrong with staying home from a night on the town if that means you’ll be sober the next day for work or school. Be a homebody, watch movies, read books, cook new recipes. There’s always something to do that doesn’t involve drinking, and the more activities you have going on, the less time and energy you’ll have to think about drinking.
5: Have Perspective
Alcohol might be a part of your culture or social life, but that doesn’t mean it’s necessary for survival or happiness. You can still maintain relationships with friends and family members without having to drink just because they do. You don’t have to stop doing the things you enjoy just because you’re trying to be sober, and if one person doesn’t like that about you, then it’s their loss, not yours.
6: Stay Sober At The Holiday Party
If you go to a holiday party and know there will be booze, try bringing some non-alcoholic drinks. Or order your favorite cocktail but ask for it without alcohol and see how good it tastes that way (it’s actually surprisingly good). If you stay sober, you can still have fun and enjoy your time with your friends and family members. If you find yourself becoming loose or giddy as the night goes on, just keep reminding yourself you can’t drink alcohol if you want to be sober tomorrow. If the party is getting too much for you, don’t be afraid to leave early.
7: Celebrate Sober
If you want to be sober, don’t wait until the new year to start. Start now and enjoy yourself and celebrate your life and all the things you can do without alcohol. There are millions of people who stay sober every day, so there’s no reason for you not to either, and there are plenty of reasons to stay sober, with or without a new year’s resolution.