So, you’ve gotten sober and you have a whole new lifestyle. That means, the way you used to celebrate the holidays may no longer serve you. But, no need to feel sad. I’ve learned to love the holidays because I created new holiday traditions for myself. Gone are the days of family fights, divorce heartbreak, and whatever other drama ran my life.

Making holiday traditions that you love will help create new, happy holiday memories

The holidays used to haunt me. Nothing like thinking back to days when holidays brought family fights, drunkenness and god knows what else. But, once you’ve found some sobriety and recovery, there’s no need to let those memories keep the holidays hostage.

If you plan to have a long-term recovery then creating new holiday traditions is a must! There’s plenty to look forward to if you single out the things that make you happy about the holidays or bring the things you love into the holidays.

5 new holiday traditions to brighten the season

  1. Be of service in some capacity – There were so many holidays in the past that sucked in some capacity. I was struggling with my own sobriety, I was fighting with family, I was fighting with people I was in relationships with, etc. etc. Over the year, I have been of service through 12 step programs during the holidays but even if I’m just helping out the people I’m soending the holidays with today, that works. I just want to make sure I bring joy with me as I walk through the world today.
  2. Travel – But, maybe not home! Plenty of people do not return home if holidays with the family are stressful. Lots of people take the holidays as time to go on those trips they’ve been waiting for. Even if you don’t have a big budget, it’s possible to get out of your own scenery and into something fresh that will leave you with a positive memory.
  3. Cook, Eat or Order – If you don’t like food, I don’t understand you. I love food. I love cooking it, going out and eating, ordering in… I just love food! The holidays have provided me an opportunity to learn how to make the holiday foods I love while also bringing my own twist into the holiday food tour. I look forward to the holidays for the food and I always will. I recommend it.
  4. Binge watch a show — Since I got sober, one time, and watched the entire series of The Shield, binge watching a show I’ve been meaning to watch has become a holiday tradition for me. I watched the entire series of Breaking Bad over one particularly boring holidays. Maybe you prefer books or going to the movies but do whatever it is you love and make it a yearly thing.
  5. Find someone or something to love — If you have a partner, spouse, children, or big family, there are lots of people around to share the love. For me, there were years I was single and lived far from my family. In those years, it was essential to love the ones I was with. I’d invite sober friends over for a meal, I’d do special things for my dogs, I’d go out to a special meal with one of my besties. Celebrate anyone in your life who you care for. We are meant to love other people and animals.

Check Out Lindsey’s new book 100 Tips For Growing Up, My 20 Years Of Recovery

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Lindsey Glass

Lindsey Glass is the co-founder of Reach Out Recovery. Her 2016 ASAM Media Award winning documentary, The Secret World Of Recovery, has helped to lift the stigma from addiction and recovery and is used in recovery programs nationwide to show what life is like on the other side of addiction. Lindsey's teen prevention documentary, The Silent Majority, was distributed to PBS stations nationwide by American Public Television in 2014-15. Lindsey has written dozens of popular articles on recovery. She is a recovery advocate and frequent keynote speaker. Lindsey is the author of 100 Tips for Growing Up, My 20 Years of Recovery, 2019. Before focusing on recovery, Lindsey was a TV and screenwriter. She has worked in publishing, web development, and marketing.

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