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Some people don't like the holidays, others love them, and there is an entire range of feelings in between. Over the years I have created space to love the holiday's and I am a Christmas girl through and through. I love the lights, Christmas candles, and having my home sparkle for a good month. Of course, let's not leave out the baked goods!

This year I am going full force. With COVID and the craziness in the world, I want to sparkle and shine now more than ever. If you are Christian this is a time to celebrate Jesus. In my recovery, it has evolved to include celebrating time with the people I love and has been stripped of any obligations that cause angst. My heart fills sharing this time and honoring friends, family, and sponsees. When all the kids were young our tradition was to walk into our local downtown and watch the Santa parade on black Friday. We would come back to my house and decorate the tree. One year we had 12 kids loading up the tree! My neighbor would make a big pot of hot chocolate and we shared the Joy of Good Living together.

If you are newer in recovery you may have to go through a few holidays to see what your comfort zone is. Consider creating new traditions that resonate with you. Make the holidays your own. Tap into the true meaning of the holiday. As we approach Thanksgiving consider ways you can give thanks and tap into deeper gratitude.

To be safe and supported here is a list of ways to stay sane and sober through it all:

  1. Go late and leave early. If you do have obligations that you cannot get out of that may be triggering limit the time at the event. Get there a little late and leave a little early.

  2. Keep literature close by, in the car, or in your purse. You can step away, take a moment for yourself, and read your favorite page to reground.

  3. Plugin those phone numbers and actually use them. Reach out to people before, during, and/or after your event. Stay connected.

  4. Plan to attend a meeting before and/or after your event. Know exactly what meetings you will attend, if it is a Zoom meeting have all the details ready so you can log in with ease.

  5. PRAY HARD. Ask for what you will need to gracefully flow through the holiday. Pray to bring the spirit of love, compassion, and joy with you wherever you go.

  6. Load up on self-care practices. Yoga, meditation, exercise, mindfulness, therapies, get enough sleep, don't skip meals, drink plenty of water, and anything that is part of your self-care.

I wish everyone the ability to build new amazing traditions the celebrate the Joy of Good Living throughout the season.

Stay close and stay connected! It may just save your life.

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