The holiday season is filled with joy - and parties! Of course you want to go and enjoy yourself, and you can without drinking. I promise!
But, first have a plan.
A plan means a way out of a situation that starts to stress or make you uncomfortable - both can lead to drinking without thinking.
Here are some good plans to get you thinking:
Time - Limit the time at the party and leave when drinks are really flowing.
Bring a sober friend - then you won't feel like the only one not drinking, plus you'll have moral support If the friend feels you are in danger - You can truthfully use the excuse "I have to go, my friend needs me to do something.’”
Call sponsor or sober friend at halfway point or within the first half hour. Let them know how you're feeling and get some welcome support or advice. You'll also be happy to hear a sober voice!
Rehearse responses to "Would you like a drink?" or "Can I get you some wine/beer/etc?" "No" is a full sentence and nondrinkers are very comfortable with saying it. "No thanks, but I'd love a club soda!" is a great response and - really - no one is paying attention to what you're doing or not doing!
And lastly - remember you don't have to go to any party or event you feel would negatively impact your physical or mental health! A polite, "Thank you but I have another engagement" isn't a lie even if your "engagement" is sitting in the tub with some holiday office cookies!
The benefits of not drinking far outweight trying to be "normal" and giving up your goal of emotional, physical and spiritual health. So relax and have fun this holiday season, but keep a Plan B ready so you feel supported and safe.
Tomorrow - Day Two Sober Holidays Tip!