1. Be careful of the desert. Many deserts contain alcohol and can trigger cravings in addicts and alcoholics in recovery.
2. Attend some extra meetings. If you are traveling, make sure you figure out where the local AA group is. Ask members of your own group if they can introduce you to someone in the city you are traveling to. AA members are often happy to network you to a temporary “support group” in another area.
3. Bring your recovery literature with you. If you are in NA, bring a Basic Text. If AA, a Big Book. If you are in another organization like SMART, make sure you bring some reminders of the plans you have available to set into motion if you are triggered.
4. Bring relapse prevention warning sign management cards.
5. If you need relapse prevention warning sign management cards, call True North and begin outpatient ASAP so you can identify your personal relapse signs and set a plan into motion before you travel!
6. Make commitments that make you accountable to stay sober while away. Don’t just travel with no plan.
7. If you are in therapy, discuss any high risk situations you can anticipate and create a plan. If you are in a situation without preparation it can be confusing and difficult to manage. Having a plan makes it much simpler.
8. Nostalgia is wonderful when it has to do with love, family, tradition, etc. Relish in it. If it crosses into nostalgia that causes a euphoric recall of the old feelings of intoxication call your AA sponsor instead!
9. Volunteer somewhere during the holidays. It will help you to stay focused on the spirit and deeper meaning of the holidays. It will also help you to feel a part of something larger than yourself. If you are religious do this through your church. If not there are plenty of organizations that need assistance during the holidays. Do not be shy. A simple internet search and a phone call to make yourself available can change the way you feel about the holidays.
10. Strive to be ridiculously filled with joy.