Holiday festivities, especially Christmas and New Year’s Eve, tend to emphasize drinking and drug use. Many people believe the myth that they’ll have more fun if they’re intoxicated, glossing over all the adverse effects like driving under the influence and waking up with a hangover. However, sober holidays can be much safer and more enjoyable than ones spent in a haze. Here are some ideas for a memorable, responsible holiday celebration.
1. Spend Conservatively
It can be easy to lose sight of the holiday spirit when retailers bombard us with commercials and sales that seem to start earlier every year. As a result, many people feel pressured to spend more than they can afford on expensive gadgets, jewelry and entertainment for everyone on their “nice list.”
Instead of starting 2021 with a depleted bank account, be responsible about how you spend your hard-earned money. If you’re crafty, think about making handmade, heartfelt gifts. Or, ask your family to forego their traditional gift exchange in favor of everyone chipping in a specific amount to donate to charity.
2. Stay Home
Every holiday season, drunk drivers cause hundreds of tragically needless deaths. Even if you’ve never contributed to this problem, being on the road during Christmas and New Year’s Eve can still be risky. Drivers under the influence can be unpredictable. You never know when someone might swerve into your lane or brake suddenly, leaving you unable to respond in time. The safest and most responsible thing to do – especially amid the current COVID-19 spike – is to celebrate at home instead of going out.
3. Don’t Neglect Nutrition
The temptation to overeat becomes nearly impossible to avoid when holiday delicacies are plentiful. Many people gain weight between Halloween and New Year’s Eve, and those excess pounds can be a struggle to lose.
While you don’t have to deny yourself your favorite meal or dessert, being more mindful about what you eat can help you avoid overloading on carbs and sugar. Thoroughly chewing your food and putting your fork down between bites is one approach to not overeating. Drinking plenty of water with your meal will help you feel full faster, so you won’t be tempted to go back for an extra serving. Try to choose foods that give you energy, instead of ones that make you feel bloated and sluggish.
4. Give Back to Your Community
Since the holiday season is all about giving, why not pay it forward to a worthwhile cause in your city? Food banks, homeless shelters and other nonprofits can always use extra help, especially during the holidays. If you can’t spare any time, offer your financial support instead. Even a small donation can make a difference, and most nonprofits know how to stretch a dollar to maximize the impact of any contribution.
A New Year Is Almost Here
2020 has been a year of unprecedented challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, the recent news about vaccine availability has given us reasons to be optimistic about what 2021 could bring. If you’re ready to have even more hope in the year to come, explore long-term addiction treatment for yourself or a loved one. Reach out to us at Spearhead Lodge to learn more about our world-class programming for young men in Austin.