You don’t want to hermit yourself away, but how can you stay sober when alcohol is everywhere?
Knowing your niece’s 21st birthday or your office Christmas party is approaching may seem intimidating, but you can reduce the nerves by planning ahead. Think of strategies you could use to survive the event sober.
You may plan to catch up with other guests, especially those that won’t always have a glass in their hand. You could decide to graze at the buffet if you’re tempted to move near the keg. Setting a time limit for your attendance will make sure you’re out the door before everyone gets buzzed and boring. Also make sure a good friend is just a phone call away so you can talk the situation through if it’s too much to handle.
Keep your game plan in mind throughout the event, and remember that alcohol isn’t a part of it.
The support of loved ones is critical to beating alcohol addiction. They’ll give you the strength to resist temptation in your weakest moments, help you stay accountable while you’re with them, and distract you when alcohol is around. They’ll even stay sober if you wish so you don’t feel like an outsider at a social gathering. Close family members and friends, especially those who cared enough to involve themselves in an session, are particularly important to you at this difficult time.
Just don’t expect everyone to applaud your decision to give up alcohol. Sobering up makes you realize that the only thing you’ve got in common with some people is a shared love of booze. Make sure you cut ties with anyone who’s judgmental about your decision to quit drinking, as they’ll only enable your addiction and make your recovery harder.
While the love and support of your nearest and dearest is important, they can’t get sober for you. It’s important to draw on your own strength when you’re around temptation. Remember why you embarked on this journey in the first place, recalling the problems you faced when you were drinking and the way your habit affected those around you.
It’s difficult to think clearly when cravings take hold, so keep a list of the reasons you wanted to quit in your wallet. You can then refer to this list when you’re struggling around alcohol.
Staying sober in an alcohol-filled environment is an achievement that deserves reward. Treating yourself when you hit these milestones gives you the motivation you need to keep going. You may spend the money you would’ve spent on beers at the game on some team merchandise, or order the fillet steak rather than a cheaper meal at your favorite restaurant since you won’t drink the wine.
Staying sober is a battle, but it’s one you can win with the help of these practical strategies.
Abigail Clark is an upcoming freelance writer. She graduated from The University of South Florida with a bachelors in marketing, minoring in journalism. When she isn’t up to her neck in coupons she is enjoying the outdoors fishing. She loves doing reviews for technology, home products and beauty products. If you would like her to do a review for you look her up on twitter @downtownabby17.