It’s that time of year! The sun is beating down, the smell of bbq tickles your nose, and you can hear the pops and booms ring in your ear as the dark sky becomes illuminated with shades of red, white and blue. Whether this is your first sober Fourth of July or your 30th, there’s always a chance you could unexpectedly become reminiscent of the smell of someone sipping on booze (someone please tell me the definition of sipping) or offering you a cold one. While you may be prepared to face the day and the evening, there are a couple of tips to keep in the back of your mind to avoid any pitfalls that may occur while you’re celebrating your freedom.
Always Have A Game Plan
Big holidays can be reminiscent of past days before you retired from the partying and drinking scene. Have the day planned. Get to a meeting, support group, or sober event. Throw your own sober party! If someone invites you to an event and you have a bad gut feeling, don’t go. Make sure you’re surrounded with people who know and respect your journey. If things start get uncomfortable, have an exit plan and plan the time you want to leave. Have someone that supports you like your sponsor or good friend on speed dial if you aren’t with them already.
Have A Non-Alcoholic Drink On You
If you are at a party that involves alcohol, and other people don’t know about your journey, keep your hands occupied and have a non-alcoholic drink on you at all times. You’ll avoid people who are constantly asking you if you want something to drink.
Focus On The Food
Is there any better holiday to master your BBQ skills? Go all out with the red, white, and blue Rice Krispy treats. Fourth of July isn’t all about the beer, but when we get stuck in our heads it’s easy to focus on it. Take time to make a cool summer salad and dish. If you have good food to look forward to it’ll be easier to not focus on the alcohol.
Keep Sobriety Number One
Remember to keep your recovery first. Remember that your number one goal is to stay sober and do whatever you have to do to keep that mentality. If things get overhwhelming and that drink starts to look good, take things one hours, minute, second, and moment at a time. Keep friends and key supports of speed dial if they aren’t already with you. If you have concerts, voice them. It’s better to speak out than suffer in silence. Remember how much better it is being sober, and play the tape to past holidays. If staying sober is your main priority, everything else will seem insignificant.