Sober People Need To Learn About Sober Travel Plans
Lately, my travel has revolved more around work than vacations, but both present a clear and present danger for me and most sober people. When you are out of town, you don’t have the protection of your regular routine, people who keep you stable, exercise regimens, meetings, and whatever else is part of your life that helps keep you sober. Personally, I need a multitude of physical and mental activities to keep me healthy and happy. When I am traveling, I don’t have my safety procedures, and adding more risk, these trips often present alcohol. That is why it is essential to have a sober travel plan.
Work Travel And Vacations Can Be Booze Filled And Dangerous
Having a sober travel plan is especially necessary if you work in boozy industries, where drinking after work and at social functions is normal, and often encouraged. I have a close friend in advertising who travels for work and is constantly confronted with heavy drinking by colleagues and at festivals. She is a long-time sober person, so she has a lot of tools, but it was hard at first. She stays connected to her recovery community, always reads recovery or spiritual books, and has a strong support system, including friends, sponsors, and a therapist. It takes a village, but it can be done.
Don’t Get Me Started On Vacations And Sober People
These days travel itself is stressful. On my last vacation, planes had mechanical failures, airports were jammed, and there was more stress than I anticipated. There were moments a drink sounded great just to calm me down or help me sleep. I didn’t want to party or get wasted. I wanted relief from the anxiety and insomnia I felt. The problem is, alcohol makes me sick. Many other people, however, drink to excess on vacations. That makes a trip harder–when everyone around you is drinking and having fun. That can start to look good. That’s another moment it helps to have some tips for recovery handy.
Travel Tips for Sober People
- Have a call list of people you can reach out to if you’re having a hard time. If you anticipate a hard time, set call times with them before the trip so you know you have to check in.
- Check to see if your recovery groups meet in your travel destination. It can be fun to check out new meetings in a different town or city than the one you live in.
- Bring your calming activities with you. If you meditate, make sure you have whatever you need for that while on the road. Books, podcasts, writing, Youtube videos, download whatever you need for the trip.
- Exit plan. Sometimes we freak out and need an exit plan. If you’re very anxious, have a getaway plan ready so you can come home if necessary.
- Avoid triggers. If you know you are going to be in a city where you have struggled before, make sure to avoid the big triggers. Don’t go to the bar. Don’t stay up too late. You get the idea.
- Self-care to the max. Traveling can make you tired and frustrated and weak! Take good care of yourself and make sure you’re not overdoing it. Find a few moments for a bath, massage, walk, run, whatever makes you calm.
- Bring your recovery toolkit! this just means don’t forget to bring all your best tools and coping mechanisms with you while you travel.
- Safe companions. Don’t travel with people who won’t respect your sobriety. If you must for work, find excuses to leave before the night gets out of control
Safety Is Your Number One Priority
Trust your gut when you are on the road. If something feels unsafe, don’t do it. If you’re getting tired and triggered, take a break. This is a wonderful opportunity to listen to your body and take care of it as needs come up. Use your sober friends and sober reference and know you can do hard things! You’ll be so proud of yourself for getting through it too.
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