Stressors, Triggers, and Expectations: The Holidays

stressors, triggers, and expectations during the holidays

The holidays can be stressful for everyone. While this year may be much different for many due to potential restrictions from the COVID-19 pandemic, you may still encounter some of the unique stressors present during the holiday season.

You might be expected to spend your time with many different people and need to travel much of the day with little downtime. When in recovery, you may be feeling vulnerable and prone to triggers, which may make staying sober challenging. You may feel like you are missing out if you spend your holiday alone. Whether we are with family or by ourselves, the stressors of the holiday season can be overwhelming.  The holidays can be a difficult time for those in recovery from addiction.

Tips for Self-Care During the Holidays

While you get ready for the holidays this year, remember to care for yourself. Here are a few ideas that may be helpful to us all:

  • If you are traveling, bring your recovery literature.
  • Meetings are everywhere especially since we now have on-line platforms
  • Alcohol DOES NOT cook off- Read the research
  • Plan your own Zoom party with friends
  • No expectations
  • Limit your time with triggering relatives
  • Bring your own water or soda to gatherings
  • Meetings are everywhere especially since we now have Zoom
  • Stay in touch with recovering friends and sponsors
  • Find a newcomer and reach out to them during the holidays
  • Gratitude List
  • Prayer and meditation
  • Enjoy some outdoor time, nature, exercise and some good ole fresh air.
  • Take Breaks: It is your holiday too!
  • Meetings are everywhere! Find them on your phone or computer.

Seven Daily Keys to Sobriety

  1. Ask God to help you stay clean and sober another day.
  2. Read morning meditation
  3. Read a portion of your recovery literature
  4. Contact our sponsor or another recovering friend(s)
  5. Keep the commitment to meetings
  6. Reach out to another suffering addict/alcoholic
  7. Thank God each night for the clean and sober day