Reach out. If you feel lonely or isolated, seek out community or other social events or communities. Many may have websites, online support groups, social media sites or virtual events. They can offer support and companionship.
Be realistic. The holidays don’t have to be perfect or just like last year, don’t set unrealistic expectations of yourself or others.
Set aside differences. Try to accept family members and friends as they are, even if they don’t live up to all of your expectations. Set aside grievances until a more appropriate time for discussion.
Learn to say no. Don’t feel pressured into giving time, effort or money that will cause stress. When it comes to sobriety, make sure your not caving to peer pressure, bring your own non alcoholic beverages.
Don’t abandon healthy habits. Don’t let the holidays become a free-for-all. Overindulgence only adds to your stress and guilt.
Take a breather/don’t forget self care. Take a break by yourself. Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, may refresh you enough to handle everything you need to do. Caring for yourself will give you the reserves to manage both holiday stress and drinking urges, and let you bring your best self to your family gatherings.
Seek professional help if you need it. Despite your best efforts, you may find yourself feeling persistently sad or anxious, plagued by physical complaints, unable to sleep, irritable and hopeless, triggered to use and unable to face routine chores. If these feelings last for a while, IT’S OKAY TO ASK FOR HELP!
Find a Mental Health or Substance Use provider/ program with IMMEDIATE availability at FastTrackerMN.org