Summer Activities and Staying Sober can be a Challenge – But it doesn’t have to be

So many fun things to do and people to see during the summer! It can be challenging to be a part of all of the festivities and maintain your sobriety, but it is possible! Here are a few things to consider:

Plan ahead

First is to plan ahead. If you are going to an activity where you know there is going to be substance use or alcohol it could be helpful to think about your expectations for how long you will stay. You do not have to be the last one to leave. You can leave anytime you want, but you need to have transportation to do so. Therefore, you may want to drive yourself, not be responsible for taking others, or have a specific exit strategy with the person who is going with you – so you can easily leave when you are ready. It is ok to say hi, grab a burger and leave if that is what you want to do.

Another planning issue

Bring what you want to drink. Frequently people don’t ask you what you want to drink if you are already holding one. Another benefit is that if you bring your own drink and hold onto it at all times you always know what you are drinking. It is also a good idea to try to do your socializing away from where the drinks are being served. There are less temptations and triggers.

Create a script

Creating a script is an opportunity for you to get creative if you want! People may ask you to do a shot or to use etc., and it can be helpful to have a couple of responses ready so that you are not taken off guard. You could go with a simple “No”, or as silly as, “I can’t because NASA needs me for the shuttle tomorrow.” Most of the time whatever your answer people move on. 

Final thoughts

The biggest thing to think about is your comfort level. If you want to go and you feel confident in potentially being tested, then go. You should have a plan for what to do when you are ready to go and consider some precautions to reduce triggers while there. If you are not ready, it is terrific that you recognize this, find a sober activity that you can do instead.  The reason you got sober is to improve the quality of your life and to get to healthy living, so go enjoy all that summer has to offer!