Summer brings with it the promise of warm temperatures, relaxed schedules, and having fun.
If you are in recovery, it doesn’t mean you have to miss out on having a good time during the summer just because drugs and alcohol won’t be part of your plans. There are a number of fun, sober activities you can enjoy during the summer with family and friends, and on your own.
Examples of Summer Sober Activities to Enjoy
Take a Hike
Get outside and enjoy the sunshine! Pack up a healthy snack and plenty of water before hitting a local park or a hiking trail near you. Be sure to apply plenty of sunscreen to protect your skin. This is an activity you can enjoy on your own (be sure to let someone know where you will be going and what time you expect to return) or with a group of friends.
Learn a Summer Sport
There are plenty of summer sports to help you stay in shape. Try a yoga or tai chi class in the park or sign up for a few golf or tennis lessons. You may even decide to take up rollerblading, surfing or waterskiing.
Plant a Garden
There is still time to plant flowers and tend to them in the summer. If you are living in an apartment or have limited space in your back yard, consider placing your flowers in some decorative containers. You still get the satisfaction of growing and nurturing your flowers, albeit in a smaller area.
Visit a Museum or Art Gallery
Play tourist and visit a museum or art gallery in your city. Check out the website in advance for special exhibits and discount days when you can get a price break on admission.
Go to a Concert in the Park
Many cities feature open-air concerts during the summer months. You can find information on your city’s official website or in local community newspapers. Take a lawn chair or a blanket to sit on during the concert, and be sure to include a sweater or jacket if the concert is taking place in the evening.
Visit a Summer Festival
There are plenty of festivals taking place during the summer. Some of them celebrate a particular culture, while others focus on a town or region’s history, or a particular food. You can find a neighborhood festival in your city or venture further afield to a village or town nearby.
Festivals feature an assortment of music, food and entertainment. Plan to enjoy a summer afternoon or day enjoying everything the festival has to offer.
Go on a Picnic
Food always tastes better outdoors. You can go solo or invite some family members or friends to join you on your picnic. Look for some easy picnic recipes online that are tasty and don’t involve a great deal of prep time.
Volunteer your Time
“Regular” volunteers may be in short supply due to family commitments or scheduled vacations during the summer. This may mean more opportunities to volunteer your time in your community.
VolunteerMatch.org is an online database of local and virtual volunteer opportunities. Search by location, skills, or a cause that you believe in. Categories on the site include the following:
Advocacy and Human Rights
Arts and Culture
Children and Youth
Computers and Technology
Education and Literacy
Health & Medicine
Immigrants & Refugees
Justice & Legal
People with Disabilities
Sports & Recreation
Join a Reading Group
If you enjoy reading, discuss your love of the written word and meet new people by joining a reading group. Check with your local public library to find out about local groups. The ReadersCircle.org website lists reading groups in the United States and several countries worldwide; simply choose your location from the pulldown menu and provide your zip code to see groups near you.
Check out a New 12-step Meeting
During the summer, it may be more challenging to get regular appointments with your usual addictions counselor or therapist. They may have travel plans that interfere with regular appointments.
It can be helpful to go to more meetings during this time. If you are already attending groups, meeting people at a new location will help to broaden your perspective in recovery.
While the summer is a wonderful time of year, it can also trigger memories of partying, drinking and drug use. It’s a good idea to be prepared by planning summer activities in advance so you can enjoy the summer while keeping your sobriety intact.
We can start you on the road to recovery.