Even in a beautiful place like Long Beach, fall and winter can be a challenging time for anyone – especially people in recovery from substance misuse. With fewer hours of daylight, and often some amount of social isolation because many of us feel less motivated to go out and do things, many recovering addicts become more vulnerable to seasonal depression.
For many people who are trying to maintain freedom from alcohol dependence or addiction, feeling sad and alone can trigger cravings that represent a setback in your recovery process. However, while it can be a larger challenge to maintain your sobriety in fall and winter, you can overcome obstacles by planning to get out more and focusing on your self-care.
1. Take Care of Your Health
Staying fit and healthy in fall and winter can be more difficult than you might expect. Most of us exercise less and eat fewer servings of fresh fruits and vegetables, which makes us feel more lethargic. As a result, you might fall back into a cycle of other unhealthy habits, such as substance abuse. Focus on staying active for at least 30 minutes per day and eating a balanced diet with plenty of produce.
2. Seek out Sober Social Events
To maintain your sobriety this fall and winter, you should make plans to get out and enjoy activities that help you resist cravings, stave off depression and combat loneliness. Round up family or friends to participate in one (or more) of the following events:
- Volunteer at Westside Thanksgiving – Thursday and Friday, Nov. 22 and 23
This annual community meal captures the spirit of Thanksgiving by allowing volunteers to give back to those who are less fortunate.
- Turkey Trot Long Beach – Saturday, Nov. 24
Work off your Thanksgiving calorie overload with a 5K, 10K, 15K or even a half-marathon. You’ll get in a workout and help attain the energy and mood boost that comes with working up a good sweat.
- Long Beach Christmas Street Fair – Saturday, Dec. 22
This free annual event includes more than 50 vendors from throughout Southern California, plus tasty food trucks. It’s family-friendly, too, including your four-legged family members.
3. Go to Group Therapy
If you don’t have a lot of friends or family who live close by, you can still spend time with others from your sobriety support group. Attending meetings like AA is effective because it will provide you with the motivation and accountability you need to maintain your sobriety successfully, regardless of the season.
Hope Is Within Your Reach
At New Found Life, we help our clients achieve the goal of lifelong freedom from drug and alcohol dependency. Our qualified team of experts has been working to save lives in Long Beach since 1993. Contact our admissions staff 24/7 to get the help and health you need.