Every September, Labor Day constitutes a 3-day weekend for many Americans who also get Monday off from school and work to celebrate the federal holiday which was is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of workers. While this may seem like a real treat, for someone who is trying to stay sober, holidays and 3-day weekends can be a huge source of fear. Having too much time on one’s hands can become a real problem for someone who is trying to stay sober.
A 12-Step program lays out a plan of action intended to keep you busy which is what is needed to achieve long term sobriety, Then when a long weekend comes about, you may find yourself with FOMO (fear of missing out) from what your friends, who do not have problems with drugs or alcohol, are doing. You may see your friends go live on social media at their pool with everyone partying and wish you could go. The only problem with this scenario is that you know you cannot go to this party because you are sure your cravings will be triggered, and you really do not want to give up all you have done in your sobriety. If you have made it this far and are making decisions to not go places that you are positive will provoke your obsession to drink and use, you have embarked on plain OKMO (ok missing out).
Still, you really do not want to just attend meetings and do your normal recovery stuff. You desire to have fun and totally should because you did not get sober to just stay home and be bored. You stopped using drugs and alcohol so you could live life to the fullest but remain sober. Let’s start with this Labor Day weekend and get imaginative in finding sober activities for you to delight in.
Host your own sober game night
Take your competitive nature to the next level by playing games with your sober friends. Play Monopoly, Head’s Up, or if you dare, Cards Against Humanity. You can serve some great snacks like popcorn, chips with dips or order some pizzas. Do not forget to provide the nonalcoholic drinks, such as root beer floats or Shirley Temples with extra cherries to share. Take advantage of this time where the object is to have fun and learn how to stay sober while having a game night with your friends.
Go see a movie
Labor Day is not necessarily a big movie weekend for theaters, but you can beat the heat by seeing a movie. With the free air conditioning, buttery popcorn, and extra-large sodas, you can seriously have a great time and be distracted from life on life’s terms for a few hours. Get a sober crew together so that you can laugh and cry with one another depending on what movie you choose. The point is to branch out and try new things that you have not done sober and do it with others who are trying to stay sober as well.
Take a hike
There is nothing like getting into nature to appreciate your sobriety. Find a trail that you can hike on and get yourself moving. Remember that technically Labor Day occurs when it is still summer, so try to stay hydrated and maybe choose to take a morning hike or an evening hike to keep from getting overheated. Pick some of your recovery peeps who also enjoy hiking to join you and then start having the time of your life. Good views, good company, and good exercise are all ways that your recovery can excel on a Labor Day hike.
Have a day off
Although you cannot take a day off from your sobriety or the results could be detrimental, you are entitled to a day off from work or school. Sleep in on Monday morning, if you can, and stay in your pajamas until late morning while making breakfast. On the other hand, you could attend a morning meeting that you normally do not get to go to start your day with recovery and then go to breakfast with your meeting buddies. Whatever makes you relax on your time off you should pursue as long as you are not thinking about drinking or using to feel at ease.
If you are unsure of what to do, discuss it with sponsor, therapist, or trusted friend to make sure that you are spending your time wisely to keep the same sobriety date you started with at the beginning of the 3-day weekend. If you start to get squirrely, put your recovery tools into action as soon as possible. You deserve the time off you have worked so hard for, but more importantly, you deserve your sobriety that you have also worked really hard to achieve.
Offering a full range of recovery and mental health services, Detox Center of Colorado offers “Expanded Recovery” to enrich our clients’ lives in mind, body, and spirit. Through evidence-based therapy options and the endless adventure of Colorado, Detox Center of Colorado fosters connection, encouraging clients to get connected to themselves, their peers, their families, and their higher power. With the power of recovery, clients are restored to full health and experience life-changing healing. Call us today for more information: 303-536-5463