Summer is here and for many, that means vacation. Whether you’re going away for a week or a long weekend, it can be a time to rest, relax, and take in the sights. However, this can be a bit challenging – and perhaps a little daunting – if you are in recovery. Vacations can mean a lot of unknowns, unfamiliar places, and potential temptations. With a little planning and preparation, though, you can feel more confident about going on vacation without as much fear of relapse.
Tips for Planning Your Vacation
One option is to talk to others in recovery and see what they recommend. They may be able to steer you toward fun getaways that won’t threaten your sobriety. There are also organizations that plan sober vacations geared toward those in recovery. It can be worthwhile to check out.
- Stay away from typical hotspots. Head off the beaten path and avoid places where you know parties and drinking are prevalent. Instead of hitting the most popular beaches, go for somewhere more low-key and secluded. You can still enjoy the sun and sand without as much temptation.
- Find local meetings. Do a little research and look for local AA or NA meetings to attend. They’re hosted around the world, so chances are you can find one nearby wherever you may be headed. Keep attending meetings to build your confidence and accountability. Plus, you’ll get to hear from new people and gain new perspectives.
- Pick family-friendly activities. Events geared toward the whole family typically aren’t centered around alcohol. They offer plenty of activities to keep you entertained and occupied. Explore new things you’ve never done before.
- Stay active. Keep yourself busy so downtime doesn’t lead to boredom and poor choices. Keep exercising to boost your mood, stay energized, and keep yourself feeling good.
Above It All can equip you with the strategies and skills you need to keep moving forward in recovery with more confidence and reduce your risk of relapse.
- Travel and Leisure, How to Plan a Vacation That Will Actually Leave You Relaxed, According to an Expert. Accessed April 7, 2016.
- Business Insider, 8 Things Successful People do After Getting Back from Vacation. Revised May 2018, Accessed April 5, 2016.
- Kelly, John. Psychology Today, 9 Quick Tips to Stay Sober on Your Next Vacation! August 2017, Accessed April 6, 2016.
- Alison Pelz, How to Stay on Track with Eating Disorder Recovery during the Summer: Tips for College Students. May 2018, Accessed April 24, 2016.
- Magnier, Mark. Huffington Post, China, Russia Join Forces For Biggest Military Exercise In Modern History… May 2011, Accessed April 16, 2016.