If you have been working on alcoholism recovery, then you should be proud of your accomplishment. However, now that the holiday season is here, you are in for one of the biggest challenges of your recovery.
Family gatherings, office parties, visiting friends and more await you. The common thread in these holiday-themed events is drinking. If you are determined, there are ways that you can maintain your sobriety and avoid placing yourself in situations where you are tempted to drink.
What triggers your drinking?
You must first realize what it is that triggers your need for alcohol. The first thing you need to do is set yourself up for success and settle any open issues that you may have due to your alcoholism. Many people who have drinking problems eventually end up with legal problems which can also lead to financial problems. You should contact a local lawyer who specializes in DWI issues in your state of residence.
The website of a prominent New Jersey DWI lawyer states “People mistakenly think that nothing can be done to defend against a DWI charge. That’s incorrect. There are many challenges that can be made to your DWI arrest.” Having some resolution to the more serious problems in your life can help you to handle everyday life problems.
The following are the top 5 most common triggers for a person battling alcoholism:
1. Stress. Don’t whip yourself into a frenzy over shopping, baking, traveling or visiting family. Without alcohol to help you handle this, you’ll get stressed out even more. Pace yourself by making plans for shopping, traveling and visiting.
If your plans do not work out, don’t panic or else you will be tempted to take a drink. Simply reschedule your visits for another time or buy your food, rather than bake it yourself.
2. Loneliness. Watching “warm and fuzzy” holiday programs on TV or talking with friends about their plans with family can trigger an episode of loneliness. To remedy this, create your own social network if you do not have family support. Find people who have been in sobriety longer than you and ask them for their support.
3. Parties. What’s a holiday without a party? And what’s a party without alcohol . . . Right? Wrong. Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to drink during the holidays.
Find alternative ways to celebrate. For instance, rather than going to a party at a bar, go to places where alcohol is not served. You can then focus on the activity and not on drinking.
4. Eating. Don’t eat unhealthy foods to take the place of alcohol. Wherever there’s a holiday celebration, there’s high-calorie, sugar-laden food around. Overindulging in sweets and caffeine will not take the place of alcohol.
5. Bad memories. For some people, the holiday season holds unpleasant memories. For instance, the death of a loved one occurred, a parent went to prison, or a personal traumatic event happened. These traumas can cause people to use alcohol as a way of numbing the pain. If the memories are too hard to bear, seek professional help.
Make a decision not to live in pain and remedy that pain with alcohol.
“To thine own self be true”
The most important thing to do is to have a talk with yourself about drinking. Ask yourself:
1. What will I gain from drinking?
2. What will happen if I start drinking again?
3. Am I willing to throw away my hard work for a drink?
Answer these questions truthfully and there’s a good chance you’ll refuse to give in to the temptation to drink. This will be one of the best holiday seasons that you’ll truly remember.
Valerie Stout Cyrus is a professional blogger who frequently researches issues with alcoholism and DWI and discovered that New Jersey DWI laws are very different from other states. She has found that by searching online for a New Jersey DWI lawyer, one can find an attorney for advice on options for handling such a charge in New Jersey.
Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thejointstaff/4171834303/