Chances are you’ve worked really hard for your sobriety and that’s something to be proud of. Even when you got tired, annoyed, or even angry, you kept pushing through doing the work. Congrats to you for that!
Now that winter’s here, some people may find themselves struggling more with low energy or negative emotions. If you live in a cold climate, you may be dealing with gloomy days and freezing temperatures – which can affect your mood. Winter has been known to have a negative impact on the emotions of some people, so it’s best to prepare yourself ahead of time if your winters are cold, gloomy, snowy, and/or rainy. It’s one thing to maintain your sobriety, but add the winter blues or seasonal affective disorder to that and you could find yourself struggling pretty hard.
The following are some helpful tips to help you get through the winter months sober and happier. You don’t have to let old man winter steal anything from you. In fact, you can resolve to enjoy the winter despite any weather challenges it might bring!
1. Have A Support Network
Know that you don’t have to maintain your sobriety feeling alone. It’ll help you to find supportive people to spend time with as you continue on your sober path. For some, this means attending a support group or 12 Step group. For others, it might mean attending a church or spiritual center. Do whatever works for you in terms of having some support to share what’s going on in your life and being able to be there for others as they share.
2. Encourage And Inspire Yourself
Get yourself some encouraging books to read over the winter months. They can be recovery-oriented or some other niche you’re interested in. There are plenty of excellent books and resources out there that can give you daily encouragement and inspiration. If you’re not much of a reader, check out some YouTube videos that may inspire you. Taking time regularly to do this can help you stay sober through winter and have a more positive disposition.
3. See A Therapist
If you find yourself struggling with the blues or depression, commit to seeing a therapist for a couple of months or more. Being able to open up and share what you’re feeling and/or what’s going on in your life can help you feel better and stay sober.
4. Enjoy Lots Of Quality Time With Family/Friends
Those that wonder how to stay sober through the winter often find that making a commitment to spending quality time with their family and/or friends helps. If you have children, make the time to play and engage with them. Brainstorm new ways to pass the time; play games, build a fort and tell stories, go sled riding, build a snowman, etc. If you Google activities to do with kids, you’ll find plenty of great ideas.
5. Soak Up The Sunshine
Even if it’s cold, you can get out there on sunny days and enjoy that sunshine. The lack of sunshine can certainly affect our moods, so when the sun’s shining brightly, bundle up and get out there. There may not be a ton of things to do if it’s freezing or there’s snow piled up high, but even walking around the block on sunny days might suffice to keep the winter blues away.
6.Engage In A Hobby
For some people, trying out a new hobby during the winter helps them in a variety of ways. If being stuck inside due to harsh weather in the winter gets you bored or down, consider starting a new hobby.
Is there something you used to do that you’ve put on the shelf for a while? Maybe it’s time to get it off the shelf and get started again. Is there something you’ve wanted to try but just haven’t taken the time yet?
Make a list of activities or hobbies you’d like to try and then narrow it down. Maybe you’ve wanted to start oil painting or wood carving, but you’ve put it off. There are plenty of hobbies to choose from, such as writing, dancing, hunting, singing, yoga, and more.
7. Believe You Can
Your thoughts play an important role in your attitudes and behavior. To get through winter sober, believe that you can. Of course, you can back that belief up with actions, such as the tips listed here. At the same time, know that many men and women who desire long-lasting sobriety can and do make it through winter without picking up a drink. You can too!
How To Stay Sober Through Winter
Depending on where you live, you may or may not have to contend with snow, ice, freezing temperatures, and cloudy days. If you do, know that these factors don’t have to mess you up when it comes to your recovery success. You’ve put a lot of time and effort into your sobriety, and the weather just doesn’t have to steal that from you.
It’s certainly possible to stay sober through winter. If you find yourself struggling, take the necessary steps toward getting some support. Chances are, you know what to do, so go ahead and be proactive. And, take these tips into consideration and put the thought out there that you’re going to enjoy this winter more than you’ve ever enjoyed it before – sober and free.
Need Addiction Recovery Help? If you or a loved one is struggling with an addiction to alcohol or a drug, know that treatment can help. Here at iRecover Treatment Centers in Alberta, British Columbia, and Newfoundland, we’re here around the clock to assist you. Addiction treatment in Canada can be just what you need to begin creating the kind of life you truly desire. Give us a call at 1-877-387-4155 and get started on your recovery journey now.
If your loved one needs addiction treatment, know that professional help is available and helpful. Here at iRecover Treatment Centers in Alberta and British Columbia, we’re here around the clock to assist those in need any way we can. Addiction treatment in Canada can be just what your loved one needs to get free and begin creating the kind of life they truly desire.