Revel in Holiday Joys

Manage the Challenges

We asked some of our clinicians, from across the country, to share their favorite tips and advice for getting safely through the festive, yet often stressful, holiday celebrations. Here are a few of their responses:

“I recently came across a cartoon that asked children how they spelled love. The answer was ‘T-I-M-E.’ During the holidays make sure to spend time with your children—reading a festive story, taking a walk to see the decorations and lights, enjoying a cup of hot chocolate . . . Above all, keep it simple.”
Jerry Moe, national director of Children’s Programs, Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, Rancho Mirage, CA

“Trying to fight the different triggers that come up during the holidays can be challenging. So increase your Twelve Step involvement, reach out more often to your sober network, set boundaries with your family members and loved ones, work on being able to say ‘no,’ remember to pay attention if you’re hungry, angry, lonely, or tired (HALT)—and always have an escape plan.”
Gloria Anderson, supervisor of Addiction Program, Hazelden in New York, NY

“Family members: Don’t miss meetings! When we’re busy, we tend to let go of self-care. There are often gratitude meetings around the holidays, which can be a real boost. And if you’re traveling, try a meeting in a new location. Look for “Friends of Bill W.” meetings on cruises or Hazelden Betty Ford chapter meetings in cities and towns across the country.”
Margaret Thompson, Family Program professional, Hazelden in Center City, MN
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