”5 Tips For Maintaining Sobriety As A Student” is a collaborative post and includes affiliate links. Please see the disclosure page for more information. Disclaimer – always verify medical information with your doctor or a professional.
College can be a minefield for those looking to maintain sobriety, and it can feel like a challenge to navigate the conventional college social scene. A growing number of students are in recovery. Many colleges are implementing recovery dorms and substance-free housing to help them with their recovery process. If you’re a sober student looking to go back to college, then perhaps some of these 5 tips will help.
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Find sober accommodation
It can be very difficult to live around people who aren’t practicing sobriety which is why it is often best to try and stay in specialist sober accommodation. Many colleges now offer sober accommodation and recovery dorms that are designed specifically to help those students who are in the recovery process or who are practicing sobriety. Check with your college before you book your accommodation as they may be able to help you find more suitable accommodation. If they don’t have specialist accommodation, then check in with local support groups such as ALPHA 180, a lifestyle support program who also offers accommodation options.
Find yourself a therapist or sober sponsor
If you are moving away from home, then you will need to find a new therapist and sober sponsor at your new location. Even if you do not feel as though you need a therapist, you may find that new feelings and issues arise as you enter or re-enter college life. So it is always worthwhile having this extra layer of support there should you need it.
Get involved in alternative activities
College isn’t all about drinking and partying and there are many other ways to have fun and to enjoy yourself while remaining sober. Try to get involved in some extra-curricular activities such as clubs or sports teams as this will help you to fill your time and to make new friends. Of course, some clubs or sports may have more of a reputation than others, and if you feel that you will be influenced by being on those teams, then perhaps choose a new hobby to try.
Remember why you’re attending college
Although college is supposed to be fun, remember why you’re attending and keep sobriety at the forefront of your priorities. By staying away from drugs and alcohol you increase your chances of coming away from college with good grades and a bright future. Keep that in the forefront of your mind if things get tough and you are tempted to slip back into old addictions.
If you want to attend a party then make a plan
For some people in recovery, it’s best to stay away from parties that include alcohol altogether. If you are further along your journey, then you may want to attend this side of the college social scene(although I think that is a bad idea). The key to attending parties while in recovery is to plan. Always stay with at least one other person to keep you accountable while you are at the party. Inform your sober support and have your phone charged in case you need to talk to them. Always arrange your own transport so that you can leave when you want to and don’t leave your drink unattended or allow anyone else to make you a drink to ensure that you don’t unknowingly drink alcohol.
There is a stigma about going to college that it only means you will be partying the entire time. College is expensive and it has a purpose to add to your future. Study hard, get your degree and start the party of life that doesn’t require a drink to be exciting! Maintaining sobriety during college is so important. Don’t take away from that by slipping back into your addiction and ruining your life while you are studying in college to get a degree.