If you've been undergoing treatment for substance abuse, you might be concerned about the holidays. Many recovering addicts find it difficult to navigate the holidays, especially those first holidays following recovery. If you're in the position, it's crucial that you prepare yourself for the upcoming festivities. Here are some tips that will help you navigate the holidays, without losing your footing.
Stay Close to Your Treatment Center
If you've recently completed treatment for substance abuse, you need to tread carefully during the holidays. This is especially important if everyone you know will be hosting parties and get-togethers. Social settings can be difficult to navigate, especially during the holidays. If this will be your first holiday season since completing treatment, it's important that you stay close to your treatment center. That way, if you feel yourself slipping back into old habits, you can check back into a familiar environment for follow-up.
Maintain Contact With Your Sponsor
If you're attending meetings and you have a sponsor, be sure to maintain contact with them throughout the holidays. In fact, it's a good idea to meet up with them at least once a week, if possible. Contact with your sponsor will help you to avoid some of the temptations that will come your way during the holidays. Not only that, but your sponsor knows what you're going through, which makes them the perfect person to discuss any difficulties you might be experiencing.
Consider Your Own Needs First
If you're still learning how to navigate life after addiction recovery, don't let the holidays knock you off your feet. One of the best ways to protect your recovery is to consider your own needs first. You might have family and friends who want you to be a part of their holiday parties. Before you agree to attend, make sure you know what you're getting yourself into. Don't be afraid to ask questions about the plans, including who will be attending, and what will be served. Above all else, don't be afraid to turn down invitations, especially if you're concerned about certain situations.
Have a Plan Already Prepared
Finally, if you are going to attend holiday parties, be prepared with a plan before you go. The first thing you want to do is create an exit strategy. Having an exit strategy will make it easier for you to leave if the situation becomes unsettling for you. It's also a good idea to include a trusted friend or family member in your plans. That way, they can help you make a break for it you feel the need to leave quickly.
Contact your substance abuse treatment center for more suggestions.