Sometimes Different Is Better
On New Year’s Eve, a night well known for overindulgence, celebrations are often fueled by alcohol and drugs. For many people in recovery, attending those parties places them in the midst of temptation and puts their sobriety at risk. If you’re in recovery and feeling discouraged about facing what you imagine will be a boring New Year’s Eve, consider the fun alternatives below. You will probably find that spending New Year’s Eve sober is much more enjoyable than you thought it could be.
Host Your Own Party – Themed or Not
You have better control over a party when you are the host. Let your guests know that the party will be alcohol-free. The people who care about you and your recovery will understand your choice. Cook a big meal, serve appetizers and finger foods, or make it a potluck party where your guests bring a dish to share with everyone. Have an assortment of beverages available, including some delicious mocktails. Play charades, rent a karaoke machine, or have a paint party. Do whatever is fun for you and your guests.
Several ideas for themed parties include:
- Masquerade party
- Disco Party
- Rest and Relaxation Spa Night
- Roaring Twenties
- Pajama Party
Take a Trip
Take a winter holiday break and get away from it all. Visit somewhere you have always wanted to go or spend some time at your favorite destination. Make some preliminary plans before you go, like checking out the reviews of restaurants or locating movie theaters near where you are staying. Whether you go alone or take someone with you, you will come back feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
Attend a Narco-thon or Alco-thon
Organizations like Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous know that New Year’s Eve is stressful, and they plan in advance to support those in all stages of recovery with their own events. These events are called Narco-thon or Alco-thon and generally run for 12 to 24 hours. They provide a safe place to go, making it easy to avoid temptation. Most of the Alco-thons and Narco-thons are made up of meetings on many different topics and last all or most of the day. Some groups end with a holiday dinner or a New Year’s Eve party.
Run a Midnight Race
From New York’s Road Runners Four Mile Midnight Run through Central Park to California’s Castro Valley Half Marathon, running in a race that begins at the stroke of midnight is a fun and exciting way to begin the New Year. These midnight marathons take place throughout the country. For example, in Phoenix, Arizona, you can take part in the 30th Annual Midnight Madness Run.
Plan a Fun Activity
Whether you ring in the New Year alone, with your family, or a group of friends, make it fun.
- Take in a movie, complete with buttered popcorn and soft drinks.
- Grab your skates and go ice or roller skating.
- Have a delicious dinner at a restaurant where they are not having a New Year’s Eve party.
- If your city has a well-lit park that is open, take a hike and enjoy the night sky and winter scenery.
- If you live near a beach and the weather permits, take a nighttime swim or stargaze as the new year begins.
- Visit a comedy club and enjoy the show.
Relax at Home Alone
If you don’t feel like going out on New Year’s Eve, stay in. Relax and enjoy a quiet evening binge-watching a television series, reading a book, or soaking in a bubble bath. Make sure you have your favorite snacks and beverage on hand, and simply relax and do what you enjoy. Go to bed early if that appeals to you.
If You Need Help
There is help available if you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol. At Canyon Vista Recovery Center located in Mesa, Arizona, professional staff members will answer all your questions and help you acquire the tools you need to begin your journey to living a clean and sober life.