Sober Summer Plans
This weekend, we celebrated Memorial Day with family and friends. This is the official start of summer! It’s not uncommon for men in early recovery to wonder what a day on the lake will look like without a drink in their hand. Never fear; sobriety doesn’t mean that life will be “boring” – far from it! As this season gets underway, we wanted to share a few of our favorite ideas for sober fun in the sun.
Drugs and alcohol are incredibly expensive habits to break. Now that they’re no longer a part of your life, you’re probably shocked by how much money you’ve saved. Why not put that extra cash towards a memorable experience? You don’t have to take an extravagant vacation – a day trip to a nearby town, visiting the zoo, or going hiking are all affordable options.
Hit the Pool (or the Lake!)
One of our favorite summer staples is cooling off in the water. There are nearly endless possibilities for getting some Vitamin Sea in the coming months. You can visit a friend’s pool, go to the beach, buy a ticket to the water park, or go kayaking on a nearby river. Anything to beat the heat! Bonus points if you invite some of your family members or sober support network.
Volunteer Your Time
This is one tenant of the 12 Steps that you can bring to your free time in June, July, and August. Seek out opportunities to work with local nonprofits whose causes you’re passionate about. By serving others, you prevent boredom and get to feel like you’re contributing to something greater. It’s an excellent use of those long summer days.
Change Up Your Meetings
If you’re feeling a little stagnant in your recovery, a new season is a great time to attend a new recovery meeting. This way, you’ll widen your network and associate with more like-minded individuals who have the same priorities as you. You may even learn something new.
Host a Sober Barbecue
Those in early recovery may laugh at the idea of a party sans alcohol, but it’s a great way to spend time with friends and family. Fire up the grill and catch up with your loved ones by cooking them some great food – you may be surprised by how much fun everyone will have.
Be a Tourist in Your City
When you go about your day to day life, it can be easy to overlook the places you drive past. Take some time one weekend to play tourist. Visit historical landmarks, browse the art at a museum, or attend a sporting event.
No matter where you live, it’s certain that there will be at least a few rainy days over the course of your summer. This is the perfect time to plan out what you’ll do when you need some time out of the sun. Is there a hobby you’ve been interested in taking up, such as woodworking or photography? You could also put together a summer reading list – if you have bad memories of these from high school, don’t worry. We promise it’s a lot more fun to pick the books yourself. Setting aside time to focus on developing a new skill or finishing a book promotes self-esteem and independence in early recovery and beyond.
Setting Boundaries This Summer
If you find yourself invited places by non-sober friends this season, we encourage you to reflect on the below points. Protect your sobriety by setting firm boundaries and setting yourself up for success this summer.
- Have a sober friend or family member accompany you to events for support.
- Leave parties early to avoid temptation – be sure you have an easy way home.
- Set a time for how long you’ll stay at events where sobriety is not a priority.
- Use relaxation tips you’ve learned in recovery if you feel stressed.
- When possible, always choose sober activities over those that include alcohol.
- If you think an event may push your limits, just skip it.
- When things become overwhelming, have a friend who you can call for support or help.
Living Vibrantly in Sobriety
Transitions can be challenging for anyone, but they’re particularly daunting for those in early recovery. As spring draws to a close and summer unfolds before us, it’s the perfect time to reaffirm your sobriety and solidify your support network. Spearhead Lodge’s programs are uniquely crafted to assist men of all ages in maintaining lasting sobriety. If you or a loved one need assistance with life in recovery, we encourage you to reach out today by calling 866-905-4550.