Spring break is just around the corner, and for many, that means non-stop partying. But if you are a college student in recovery, spring break can be a particularly challenging time. You want to get the full college experience, but you don’t want to put your sobriety at risk. Fortunately, spring break doesn’t have to mean blacking out in Panama City Beach. A sober spring break is not only what is best for your recovery but will also enable you to have great experiences – ones that you will actually remember.
Sober Alternatives to Your Typical Spring Break
You know that being surrounded by excessive drinking and readily accessible drugs could cause you to relapse. Don’t risk your sobriety. Avoid the usual spring break activities and try these alternatives instead.
- Yoga and Wellness Retreats: What better way to unwind after a stressful semester than to spend a week in a beautiful and serene setting. From yoga, to qigong, to cooking classes, to hiking, to eco-adventures ⎼ the opportunities are endless. And the best part is that there are affordable yoga and wellness retreats worldwide, so you can enjoy all of the sun without any of the dangers that come along with traditional spring break destinations.
- Volunteer Trips: Ever wanted to travel abroad, learn about a different culture, give back to the environment, or help others? If so, spring break volunteer trips are perfect for you. Not only do you get to visit unique destinations and make new friends but you get to spend your break making a difference in the world. There are several programs available ⎼ from teaching kids to surf in South Africa to saving turtles in Costa Rica to teaching English in Peru ⎼ so you will be sure to find the program that is right for you.
- Adventure Trips: If you enjoy the outdoors and are looking for a thrilling spring break, then grab your friends and embark on an adventure trip. Whether you decide to go camping in the woods, hiking across the Rocky Mountains, whitewater rafting down the Chattooga River, paragliding over Maui, or exploring the Cumberland Caverns, you are sure to have an unforgettable experience. And as a bonus, spending time in nature does wonders for your mental health.
Tips to Stay Sober This Spring Break
Spring break allows you to let go of your responsibilities at school, but it doesn’t mean you can forget about working on your recovery. Whether you are on vacation or not, it is important that you always keep your recovery in mind and do what you need to do to safeguard your progress. While you are on vacation, be sure to:
- Treat Your Body Right: Sure, you’re on vacation and you can certainly indulge in some extra junk food and road trip snacks, but it is important that you are mindful of your eating habits. Be sure to stay hydrated and don’t forget to include some fruits and vegetables into your meals.
- Take a Break: Practicing self-care is very important in recovery and what better time to unwind than on vacation. While you may be tempted to fill every minute with exciting activities, sometimes what you truly need is some time to relax. So, be sure to allow yourself to take a nap, enjoy a bath, or take a walk outside every once in a while.
- Stay in Touch: It can be easy to miss a meeting or forget to check in with your sponsor when you’re traveling and having fun, but staying connected to your recovery network is crucial. Be sure to check in with your loved ones, sober friends, and anyone who supports your recovery on a consistent basis. Know that it is always okay to ask for help, even on vacation.
- Bring a Friend: By traveling with someone who knows your journey you will ensure that you have the support you need to overcome any temptation you may encounter.
Being sober during spring break is not easy, but it does not mean you have to miss out on the excitement. There are countless alternatives to drinking on the beach ⎼ and they are all more fun and better for you. So, find what catches your interest, grab your friends, and enjoy a sober spring break you will never forget.