Whether you are brand new to the recovery scene or if you have some considerable clean and sober time under your belt, the dawning of the New Year takes on a deeper meaning. The New Year is the time when you reflect on how much you have learned and grown, and you look forward to a new year of health, happiness and continued sobriety. While the future look bright, it can also be filled with uncertainty and doubt. The journey towards long-term sobriety is often filled with obstacles that will test your recovery meddle.
As the ball drops and a new year dawns, you need to focus on the positive growth you had experienced in the past year and leave behind the setbacks you may have encountered. While many people celebrate the New Year with cocktail parties and other social events that revolve around alcohol, you can fully take part in the camaraderie and joviality of the occasion without slipping back into substance use. The following are 7 ways in which you can ring in the New Year without drugs or alcohol.
Take Part in an Alcathon
You may be asking yourself “what on earth in an alcathon?”. Alcathons are get-togethers sponsored by local AA and other 12-step groups that provide the extra support and encouragement people in recovery need during the holiday season. A common feature of alcathons are 24-hour marathon meetings that are usually held in one location so recovering addicts can have a space and supportive space to go no matter what time of day. In addition to meetings, groups that put on alcathons may offer dinners, dances or other recovery-based activities.
Have a Dinner Party
Dinner parties are another way you can ring in the New Year clean and sober. You can create your own menu and appetizer trays filled with holiday favorites such as seafood, deli meats and cheeses or crackers and cheeses. You can also try out novel ideas such as omelet or waffle bars or even a “make your own” dessert table. You can invite friends and family to help you plan the menus, shop for the food and other items as well as help prepare the food.
Have a Mocktail Party
Drinks are another staple of the holiday, but they don’t have to contain alcohol to taste good. Throw a mocktail party which features non-alcoholic drinks. There are many recipes online for a wide variety of non-alcoholic cocktails. Instead of soda or sparkling water, you can create delicious punches, spritzers, mixed drinks and ciders that are great tasting and guilt-free.
Invite the Kids
Another great way to party sober on New Years is to attend a family-friendly party or put together your own. If you have kids or are close to friends with kids, having an alcohol-free party is a great New Years option. Having kids be the focus of the festivities will take the pressure off not being able to drink. You can offer such activities as making gingerbread houses, going on a scavenger hunt or having a dance party.
Get Out of the House
Sitting at home watching TV is boring, and go to a party and watching other people drink invites trouble. If you want to get out of the house, engage in an activity like cross-country skiing, ice skating, or invite friends and family for a sledding party. You can also attend concerts, plays and even catch a fireworks celebration.
Chill Out and Center Your Mind
The New Year can put added stress on you–especially if you are in recovery. A great way to stay sober for New Years is to make time for mind-calming activities such as yoga or mindful meditation. This is a great opportunity to focus on the present and what you have accomplished in the past year and renew your energies to make the New Year even better.
If you are struggling with thoughts of drug and alcohol use during the New Year (or any time of year for that matter), a great way to strengthen and refocus your recovery is to help others. Whether you offer to shovel your neighbor’s driveway, volunteer at a drop-in center or homeless shelter or help keep an elderly neighbor company, it puts you in a position of responsibility, and the thanks and gratitude you receive will boost your confidence and self-esteem.
What is Your Resolution for the New Year?
The New Year can signify new beginnings and fresh starts. If you are struggling with an addiction to drugs and alcohol, make a recovery resolution and contact Dream Center for Recovery. We are one of the premier drug and alcohol treatment facilities in Florida, and we offer a wide variety of effective treatment programs that are evidence-based, proven to work and individualized to meet your unique needs.
Make the new year one to remember; call Dream Center for Recovery today!