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6 Tips for Staying Sober During the Summer

Every season brings different challenges to sobriety, but the summer months often coincide with family gatherings, parties, and lots of excuses for drinking. If you're committed to having your recovery journey, it's important to prepare yourself for the summer season.

Prioritize Spending Time with Sober Friends

One of the best things you can do for your recovery is stay connected to a positive support network. You'll find it's much easier to stay sober if you're surrounded by other people who aren't drinking.

If you lack a sober support network, make it a priority to connect with new friends who share similar values as you. Support groups, whether they're in-person or online, are a great way to meet people of all ages and demographics. This can be especially paramount during your early recovery.

Identify Your Triggers (And Plan For Them)

Triggers are an inevitable part of the recovery process, and it's important to consider which people, places, or situations evoke the desire to drink. Keep in mind that negative thoughts around recovery are common, and it makes complete sense to question your relationship with alcohol even after you have committed to sobriety.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with you if you experience triggers or cravings. But it empowering to have this internal awareness. The insight allows you to change how you respond to typical stressors.

For example, if you know that you typically want to drink when spending time with certain family members, you might decide to:

  • spend less time with those family members

  • check in with a supportive friend before or after those specific social activities

  • engage in brief mindfulness ahead of time

  • set explicit boundaries around which behaviors you will or will not tolerate

  • plan fun sober activities to do with those family members to avoid being around drinking

Dial In Your Self-Care

Your schedule may fluctuate more during the summer months, particularly if you're planning vacations, spending time with families, or enjoying various summer events. This is a good thing! You deserve to enjoy your summer vacation without the perils of drinking or hangovers.

However, you may also feel stressed by all the changes. This is normal, and it can be a gift to yourself to practice more self-care during a difficult time.

Remember that self-care matters in all stages of recovery, and different seasons will call for different self-care needs. Self-care refers to engaging in deliberate acts that honor your mental and physical health. Self-care is not about a "single activity." Rather, it's about committing to a mindset that promotes balance, self-compassion, and healthy activities.

Enjoy Mocktails

With so many non-alcoholic drinks available, it's much easier to stay sober at restaurants or outings. Some people find that it's helpful to enjoy a sober summer knowing such refreshing options are fairly mainstream.

You can enjoy mocktails on your own by trying new recipes or experimenting with various flavors. Furthermore, you might want to look up local places to check their drink offerings.

Seek Professional Support

Recovering from a substance use disorder can be emotionally and physically challenging. Relapse can sometimes be a part of the recovery process. Similarly, even if you stay sober, you may struggle with mental health concerns or other relevant stressors.

If you're struggling to stay sober- or if you're able to stay sober, but still not feeling happy or good about your life circumstances, professional support can make a big difference. This is especially true if you experience co-occurring mental health concerns or trauma symptoms.

Think Creatively for Sober, Summer Fun

Although many fun activities in the summer do focus on drinking, it doesn't have to be that way. There are so many indoor and outdoor activities that you can enjoy without alcohol.

Consider writing down a list of new activities or hobbies you'd like to pursue during these months. It may even be helpful to make a sober summer bucket list, which might include:

  • watch the sunrise at the beach

  • plan a summer party with all your friends

  • go camping on Labor Day

  • plan weekly barbecues or social gatherings

  • learn how to surf or paddleboard

  • read a new book each week

  • take a yoga class

The goal isn't to completely jampack your schedule, but the goal is to feel more empowered in your daily activities throughout sobriety. This gives you the momentum to keep going!

Prioritizing Your Substance Abuse Recovery With Resurface Group

At Resurface Group, we focus on treating all types of addictions and mental health concerns. We help people of all ages and demographics learn how to live meaningfully, and we can help you at all stages of addiction recovery.

Our IOP, Resurface Connect, provides convenient and discreet virtual treatment for clients residing in California. We accept most HMO and PPO insurance plans, and we are here to support you throughout your journey.

Contact us today to learn more.

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