With holiday stresses, dirty snow everywhere, icy roads, cabin fever, and freezing temperatures the winter is considered less than enjoyable for many people.
As a drug rehab in PA, we are all too familiar with the negatives that come with this time of year including the dreaded winter blues. We know that for this reason staying sober over the winter can be challenging. The holidays can leave you feeling lonely and depressed. And the cold weather can leave you trapped indoors with seemingly nothing to do, but you don’t need to ruin your recovery progress.
How to Beat The Winter Blues & Stay Sober While Doing It
When Jack Frost is nipping at your nose and the effects of seasonal affective disorder on wearing you down, it may be tempting to pick up a bottle or get high, but there are plenty of sober activities for the winter that will keep your recovery on track.
Yes, it may be cold outside, but that doesn’t mean you have to avoid going outside altogether. Staying mostly inside for months at a time can easily lead to boredom, and boredom can be a recipe for relapse. Instead, think back to when you were a kid and you actually enjoyed the snow. Go sledding, have a snowball fight, or go skiing. You can even simply go outside for a brief walk. Not only are there plenty of outdoor activities to keep you occupied but being outside is good for your physical and mental health. We even offer a wilderness addiction treatment program so that our patients can take full advantage of these benefits.
Having A Relaxing Day At Home
Especially during early recovery, you may find yourself feeling stressed. When this happens, take a step back. The winter is the perfect time to read by the fire, have a movie marathon, do yoga, meditate, or create your own personal at-home spa day without feeling guilty for not leaving the house. You will be able to calm yourself down and feel less tempted to turn to drugs or alcohol to help you cope.
Choose Your Holiday Activities Wisely
With the holiday season comes plenty of activities and events. Although you may feel obligated to do everything, this can lead to stress, unrealistic expectations, and being overwhelmed. All of these can lead to relapse. Instead, only participate in what you want and avoid anything that could leave you surrounded by drug triggers. The last thing you need after completing an alcoholism treatment program is to be surrounded by heavy drinking and booze everywhere.
Find A New Hobby
When you first started cocaine addiction treatment, you may have begun to feel a void left behind from your addiction. One of the best ways to stay sober during the winter is to find a new hobby to fill that void. Keeping busy is good for anyone in recovery no matter what time of year, but during the winter, you may feel like you have more time on your hands just because you are spending more time inside. There are plenty of fun, healthy, and sober hobbies you can try.
If winter is bringing you down, you can always get away. This could be a holiday to a tropical paradise or a weekend trip somewhere nearby. Sometimes just changing your setting can boost your mood and take you away from the familiar drug triggers of your hometown. Just make sure you choose somewhere that won’t be even more tempting. You want to get away to stay sober during the winter, not increase your chances of relapse
Whether you have recently relapsed or you are still thinking about taking that first step to getting sober, do not hesitate any longer.