You should celebrate your milestones when it comes to sobriety. It’s a huge accomplishment. One day is a huge deal, one week is a huge deal, one month is a huge deal, and one year is a huge deal. Celebrate one year sober on your own terms; here’s how!
For some people, getting over that one day hump is a massive accomplishment. Let’s take that back, actually. One day is a massive accomplishment for everyone who is struggling with addiction…
And eventually, all of those “one days” will pile up, and before you know it, you’re at a year.
So, how do you celebrate a year of sobriety?
Well, here’s the thing. If you’re an alcoholic, or have other substance issues, then the way you would celebrate good news is probably by drinking or using your substance of choice, and that’s not how you do things anymore.
So, celebrating can feel kind of strange, especially if you’ve had to cut off some of your friends or even family members while you work through recovery.
How To Celebrate One Year Sober Safely
The first thing, of course, is accepting that it’s going to be a sober celebration. After a year, you’ve probably found new pleasures and pastimes, so turn to those for ideas.
For example, if you’ve taken up a love for hiking, you could go on a hike with some friends or even by yourself, and just appreciate where you’re at in life compared to where you could have been if you didn’t make that change a year ago.
It doesn’t have to be hiking. It can be a nice meal at a restaurant you like, it can be staying in and watching your favorite movie, it can be calling a pal to talk to on the phone, whatever you feel like.
You don’t even have to make a big deal out of it, you can treat it like any other day, if you’d like to. It really depends where your thought process is at, and there’s really no wrong answer here other than doing something that will contribute to your continued sobriety for many more years to come.
Celebrate Alone or With People?
This really depends on your situation.
There’s nothing wrong with soaking in this milestone alone, but recognize that it can be profound and emotional, and make sure you’re ready for that!
Sometimes, sobriety can feel very isolating. It’s not uncommon to have to find new friends if all of your old friends just drink anytime they get together. It’s okay to separate yourself from that! If you’re still on good terms with your friends, and they aren’t addicts who are going to put your sobriety at risk, you could always reach out with them to get together and ask for a sober night. You might feel weird imposing like this on a normal get-together with your friends where they might have a beer or wine with dinner or what have you, but any good friend should be happy to celebrate this milestone with you, sober.
I talked about how you may have had to isolate yourself from certain groups of people. A year isn’t always a lot of time to build a new friend group, especially in recent years. Be kind to yourself and don’t beat yourself up if you don’t have any new friends to celebrate with. Your top priority is being sober, and you’ve achieved that for a year, and you’re a path – things will fall into place, you’ll meet sober friends, and you’ll get to look back on year two and see how much additional progress you’ve made.
Getting To That One Year Sober
There’s another side of the coin when it comes to how to celebrate one year sober.
The other way of thinking about this statement is how to do what it takes to get to that one year, rather that one to do once you get there.
Here’s some additional advice: