Summertime is when people get their t-shirts and shorts on, barbeque pits outs, and invite friends over. It is a time to go outside and play while the sun shines endlessly and it seems like everyone is happier and more social. For people with sobriety, the first, or subsequent, summers can be fraught with worry, anxiety, and concern about how to navigate triggers and cravings. Try some summer sobriety tips that may help navigate the challenges and thrive this summer.
Know Your Limits
Everyone has to know their personal boundaries and limits. One of the challenges of summer sobriety is that people will invite you to parties, events, and spaces where alcohol and drugs may be more present. If you do not want to be around that, you need to stick to your sober plans and say no. It might mean going to more sober summer activities, games, and events. It may mean asking friends not to invite you to anything where they know substances will be present or bring them to any events you have at your place. Whatever it might be, know your limits, and set them early. This will let everyone know where you stand and help them help you have a fun time this summer.
Armed with a friend or family member in tow, you are more likely to feel supported on the journey of recovery this summer. When someone offers a drink without realizing (or remembering) your sobriety, or you are triggered by something, that person can help you navigate it quickly. Have an action plan set up ahead of time about what to do when this happens so they have some expectation how best to help you in that moment. If going out alone is hard, bring people who will understand your situation and know how to help you cope.
One of the best ways to avoid getting too many invites to summer social events is to participate in activities that don’t involve alcohol. You can count on the events you planned on attending to be sober-friendly ones when you put them on your calendar yourself. You may not be able to plan something that triggers you, but at least you can give yourself a running start. There is no telling when you show up at a friend’s party, house, or event that they won’t have some alcohol there that triggers you. Help put it out of your mind by making sure you place priority on sobriety this summer and be an active participant in your own recovery.
Recovery is difficult those ‘firsts;’ first holiday, first birthday, first summer. Then, it begins to feel more routine that you know what to do, what to expect, and so does everybody else around you that knows you well. The key is not to get too comfortable and feel like you can relax more now in recovery. You may want to consider trying something new to remind you that sobriety is still the number one priority and not to get too comfortable with the idea it is a given. Some thoughts to consider:
- Give back and volunteer with an organization that needs help. Whether it’s one off or something consistent, find somewhere to plug in that you can help others to take the focus off yourself
- Go to new recovery meetings in new spaces. Maybe you’ve been wanting to try a different group for awhile. Don’t hesitate to step out and try something different
- Host your own sober summer gathering or barbeque at home
There are myriad ways to plan sober summer time that will be fun for you and keep you focused on recovery. If you are struggling, talk to loved ones and people who support your journey. There is hope and healing in recovery.
Oceanfront wants to help you have an amazing sober summer. If you are struggling to figure out how to get sober and clean, we are here to help. We are founded on the principle of providing the best in care and services at affordable prices. We are located in beautiful Laguna Beach. Call us to find out how we can help you navigate addiction recovery: 877-279-1777