The number one way you can maintain your recovery while traveling is to plan for your recovery first. Whether you are traveling for business or just going on a vacation, planning for your recovery will be the best way to ensure that you stay safe and can recover anywhere.
Staying abstinent and sober must come first no matter what when going away
Traveling can really throw a curveball into your daily routine and especially your recovery routine. The same things you do at your home to not pick up a drink or drug will likely help you while you are traveling also.
Stay away from people, places and things as much as possible when traveling
If you are flying and find yourself in an airport waiting for your flight or connection to your next flight, don’t wait in the bar or some other place that probably isn’t recovery friendly. Instead, find a restaurant that has seating not at the bar and relax with a meal while you wait.
Prepare for when you have downtime
Bring some recovery literature for times when you may be alone, feeling vulnerable or just need to focus on your recovery. Downtime while traveling for business or pleasure is almost guaranteed with places like airports, hotels, beaches and any other way you could plan to travel, so you may want to use your downtime wisely and pick up some recovery literature.
Plan your daily activities and think about what you know of your schedule as best as possible
You don’t have to create an itinerary or figure out every detail of your vacation or business trip, but thinking about what your days will look like is a good way of preparing for situations that could put your recovery on the rocks.
Plan for your recovery too
Thinking about what your day looks like when you are away on a trip is also a good way to do things for your recovery. Maybe you would like to attend a 12-step meeting in another area while on vacation or get some peace and quiet to finally finish writing on some step work. You could even plan to try and journal while on a trip. Your recovery could really benefit from a vacation.
Stay connected to your network
Make sure you can stay connected to the people that are important to your recovery. If you are traveling to another country and will not be able to call easily, then downloading an app for international texting or email may be a great tool to stay connected while you are away.
Try doing the basics
If you do plan to attend a recovery meeting or event while traveling then make sure you go out of your way to introduce yourself and get to know the people that are there. You might find out about more recovery related events going on in that area from the people there or maybe you will just have an opportunity to expand your recovery network.
Stay open minded
Recovery may look very different in another area that you are traveling in, so keep an open mind if you find yourself in a different type of meeting or recovery event than you are used to. Maybe you are going to a rural area where you will only have an opportunity to attend a different fellowship than you would typically attend. Recovery can look different for everyone and that also means it can look different everywhere.
Getting back on track
If you are going away for business or vacation and choose to refrain from your daily recovery routines like attending 12-step meetings regularly or reaching out to your network consistently, then make sure you get right back on track when you come home. Taking a little break from routines while on vacation may be what you need, but remember that being consistent with your recovery is also very important.
Enjoy your time away from home
Even if you are going away for business and not vacation, it is easy to try and relax while getting away from your home life for a little bit. What’s more spiritually healing for your recovery than relaxation and clearing your mind? Take some time while you are away to enjoy the moment and remember that your recovery can be fun even when traveling.