Maintaining Addiction Recovery on Vacation
Monday, September 21 2015 Kira Lesley
You need to maintain your addiction recovery, even while on vacation. Vacations should give recovering alcoholics and addicts a break from our routine, but not our addiction recovery. Maintaining a program of addiction recovery while vacationing is crucial for physical and psychological sobriety.
Why Vacations Can Be Dangerous for Your Addiction Recovery
Traveling to someplace outside the ordinary is a wonderful way to recharge. However, the vacation mindset may sometimes stray from the addiction recovery mindset. While experiencing the sights, smells and pace of a different location, it’s easy to feel like a different person. I have often heard recovering alcoholics and addicts say that, particularly when traveling abroad, they feel disconnected from their normal lives. A vacation should disconnect us from the stressful parts of our lives but not the life-sustaining parts!
I recently was fortunate enough to enjoy a vacation in Hawaii. For that week I did not work or study. I almost gave up email (but not quite) for the days I was gone. But I took my medication for treating alcoholism every day, I slept every day and I consumed food and beverages every day. Why should my addiction recovery habits be any different while I'm on vacation? Those practices are all necessary for my health, and, indeed, my life.
Maintain a Vacation Addiction Recovery Routine
My addiction recovery requires me to stay in touch with my addiction recovery program (What Are Addiction Recovery Programs and Do They Work?). So, I looked up meetings ahead of time. Though I only attended one meeting while I was there, which is less than my normal routine, I’m ambivalent about it. I also read recovery materials and prayed multiple times daily (as I always do). I ask my higher power every morning to keep me clean and sober and nicotine free that day, and I thank my higher power for doing so at the end of every day.
It’s easy to let recovery slide when you’re having fun. One way to avoid this danger is to use the power of gratitude to extinguish negativity. If you’re enjoying your vacation, give thanks to your higher power for it. Or if that doesn’t ring true to you, try to pause and appreciate where you are as opposed to where you could be in your addiction. Some folks read a particular inspirational passage, say certain prayers, or call or text other folks in their addiction recovery support system as part of their daily routine. Whatever your addiction recovery routine is, sticking to it can save you from real danger while on vacation.