Monday, December 21, 2015

Staying Sober During the Holidays

By: Terry and Sherry Pouncey, with ARCpoint Labs of Birmingham at Greystone

The holidays can be one of the most difficult times during the year to stay sober. For some, it’s the excess of food and drink and merriment. Attending parties and being surrounded by people eating and drinking to their heart’s content can make staying sober difficult, as no one wants to be left out of the party. And of course, there’s the stress of planning for the holidays, cooking the food, hosting a family gathering, and being forced to spend time with those family members that you may normally try to avoid. All that stress can make it tempting to use just one little drink to relax. Unfortunately, that one little drink tends to turn into two, and then three, and even more. These tips will help you stay strong and stay sober this holiday season.

Plan Non-Alcoholic Drinks Ahead of Time

If attending a holiday meal or other holiday party where most of the other adults will be drinking alcohol, make sure to bring your own non-alcoholic alternative beverage. Rather than just drinking water, consider bringing something that you enjoy drinking, whether that’s Diet Coke, non-alcoholic apple cider, or juice. Bring some sparkling grape juice for a more festive drink that you can even slip into a wine glass to feel more included in the holiday toast. Being prepared with a tasty alternative will give you something to sip on while others are downing glass after glass of wine.

Connect with a Support Group

As the holidays approach, it may be a good idea to connect with a sober support group, if you don’t already have one. Before entering any kind of high-risk situation, like a holiday party, attending a support meeting or talking with a sponsor or mentor will help give the support and resolve you’ll need to help you stay sober.

Recruit a Sober Buddy

Invite a sober friend to attend the Thanksgiving meal or holiday party with you, or ask a close family member to help you by remaining sober with you. Having someone by your side who you can trust to remain sober with you can be an enormous help. It’s much less tempting to drink if a friend is not drinking and that friend can also keep an eye on you to help keep you from slipping up.

ARCpoint Labs provides drug and alcohol testing to promote a sober and healthy workplace. Find the nearest ARCpoint Labslocation today.

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