Even though 2021 is already looking a lot better than the year prior – made exceedingly evident by widely circulating Bernie Sanders memes – we are still in the midst of nationwide shutdowns and stay-at-home orders. For those of us who are in addiction recovery, this time has been exceedingly difficult, seeing as many of us rely heavily on in-person peer support groups in order to maintain accountability. We have all had to navigate a series of strange and unprecedented events, and many of us have slowly adapted to what can be considered (at this point) the “new normal.” At the same time, many of us are starting to get a little bit restless – which can be dangerous to our sobriety if we don’t learn how to manage the restlessness and pour our energy into healthy and productive activities. So what do we do? Where do we go from here?
At Chapel Hill Detox we sincerely believe that with the right tools in place, you can successfully stay sober through any challenge that life throws your way. But in order to stay sober, you also have to be having some degree of fun. We have compiled a list of healthy and recovery-friendly ways in which to have fun as you navigate a masked country with a super early bedtime.
Fun Sober Activities to Enjoy During Lockdown
Some examples of fun sober activities to enjoy during lockdown include:
Host a virtual arts and crafts night. Get a small group of friends together and settle on an art project, then host a virtual hangout and complete the project together. This is a good way to stay connected to others while engaging in an activity that can be therapeutic. You can look online for pre-organized craft kits, and easily order some to be delivered – or, completely DIY it and use items that can be found in every household.
Start a book club. Reading seems to be somewhat of a lost pastime, what with the emergence of social media and the popularity of Netflix and chill. Find a group of friends (or even acquaintances) and settle on a different book every month. Host a Zoom meeting at the end of the month to discuss the book. not only will this help you stay accountable, but it will help you stay connected.
Learn to knit. Knitting might seem pretty lame to those who have never tried it, but it is actually extraordinarily fun, and if you get a move on it now you might have a scarf or a beanie to give a loved one come next Christmas.
Learn to make memes and send personalized memes to your friends. Take advantage of new technology and make yourself laugh all at once. Making memes is actually pretty cathartic.
Learn to cook. Do you miss eating out at your favorite sushi restaurant? Learn to recreate the best rolls yourself. Do you wish that you could enjoy a pasta dinner in that dimly lit Italian joint down the road? Light some candles and learn how to make pasta. Cooking is a great way to pass the time and it can be extremely therapeutic. Not to mention, by the time quarantine is lifted you will be equipped with a completely new skill set.
Make a pie for a neighbor. It might be a little weird, but so what. Bake a pie for your favorite neighbor and hand-deliver it to their doorstep. You might accidentally start a movement, who knows.
Take an extended break from social media and get to know yourself a little bit better. This is a great time to get to know yourself on a more personal basis. What do you like? What do you dislike? You can even get really weird with it and have a conversation with yourself. Why not, it’s not like anyone is watching.
Make up your own TikTok dance. Once the social media break has ended, try choreographing your very own 60 second dance and post your moves online. This is a very new age way to fit some exercise into your daily routine.
Clean the living crap out of your personal space. Having a clean space helps facilitate mental well-being. Deep clean everything in sight – you’ll definitely feel good once the cleaning process is over.
Take a long bath and read a book. Treat yo’self. You deserve it.
Ways to Stay Sober Amid the Boredom
In addition to having extracurricular fun and finding hobbies and activities that you enjoy, remember to stay up-to-date on your personal program of recovery. Here are several ways in which you can adjust your daily routine but still stay sober long-term.
Get engaged in virtual Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. Most meetings have moved online, but that is not an excuse to avoid them. You can easily find a meeting in any city or state across the US – which is actually really cool. If you so desire, you can virtually attend a meeting in a different state every single day. There are many groups on social media outlets like Facebook that offer virtual meeting lists, you just have to know where to look. reach out to Chapel Hill Detox for more information.
Pray and meditate every morning and every evening (or whenever you see fit). Keeping up with your prayer and meditation is essential to the maintenance of sobriety. Now is the perfect time to explore guided meditations online, or explore different methods of prayer. Explore, explore, explore! There are many ways in which to make your spiritual journey a super fun one.
Incorporate a holistic treatment method into your daily routine. For example, Yoga Therapy or Nutritional Therapy. Look back to your treatment days and draw examples from that program. Did you find that yoga helped quiet your mind and relieve stress? Did you find that preparing nutrient-dense meals helped alleviate cravings? Try some alternative methods of therapy and self-soothing that have the potential to transform into helpful hobbies.
Find a recovery-related book and read a chapter or an excerpt before you go to bed every evening (or first thing when you wake up in the morning). not only will this add some much-needed structure to your day, but it will help you start and end the day on a solid note. Sometimes something as simple as an inspirational quote can provide you with the motivation you need to make it through the day.
Make sure that you are attending to your mental health. If you suffer from a dual diagnosis disorder – and even if you don’t – this is a really good time to keep up with individual therapy sessions. you might not be able to meet with a therapist in person, but you can still orchestrate online visits. Take whatever steps necessary to ensure that your mental health stays intact, seeing as this unique time has been shown to contribute to anxiety and depression.
Chapel Hill Detox and Addiction Recovery
If you are not currently in a program of recovery, and you have been suffering at the hands of a mild, moderate or severe substance abuse disorder, this is an ideal time to reach out for help. Chapel Hill Detox provides essential treatment services to men and women throughout New Jersey and all surrounding areas. Reach out today to learn more about our comprehensive detox program, or to begin your own journey of healing. We look forward to speaking with you soon and helping out in any way possible.