Labor Day Weekend: 4 Tips for Staying Sober

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Labor Day signals the end of summer, which can bring about anxiety for some people. At the same time, some people find relief that they made it through this social season. Long days spent boating, attending summer barbecues and visiting music festivals can bring about much unwanted temptation.

But, before the summer officially comes to a close, we have to get through Labor Day. Practice the same smart strategies that you have been all summer. Now is not the time to get complacent in your recovery. Below are a few thoughtful suggestions for the upcoming weekend.

1. Avoid Feeling Sorry for Yourself

Life might be tough right now, but it’s important not to position yourself as a victim. You are working towards a positive, healthy life that is free from the restraints of alcohol. If you find yourself feeling sorry for your situation, it’s a sign you need to reflect with a gratitude journal.

When you write down the things you are thankful for, it forces you to think of what you have. A roof over your head. A family that loves you. The ability to walk, see and hear. Things could be worse, so embrace what you are given. You are not a prisoner. In fact, you’re more free than ever.

2. Make Delicious Mocktails

Some clients in our outpatient rehab in Agoura say that it helps to have a drink in hand when they are out. This way, people don’t keep asking if they’d like a drink. We think this is a great suggestion because hosts want their guests to be happy.

If you don’t want the awkward, “Can I get you a drink?” conversation, bring some non-alcoholic party drinks. There are plenty of great recipes for Labor Day, such as Dole Whip Lemonade, Kombucha and flavored punches. You can find all of these recipes on

3. Change Your Mindset

People look for excuses to drink. While Labor Day weekend is a great time to kick back and relax, it’s certainly not worth relapsing over. Remember that this is just another weekend and not anything that warrants drinking or getting intoxicated.

Your mindset largely depends on how far you are in recovery. If you are new to recovery, you probably have a more fixed mindset. If you are working through your recovery, hopefully you are developing a growth mindset where you realize that you can do anything you put your mind to.

4. Be Realistic about What You Can Do

If you want to go out and enjoy Labor Day weekend, nothing is stopping you. There are plenty of activities you can enjoy, just be realistic about which ones are healthy. Avoid parties and gatherings where you know heavy drinking will be. Stick to places and festivities where alcohol won’t be the focal point.

If you do run into trouble when you’re out, follow your exit strategy. This may include calling a trusted friend or leaving the situation immediately. Having a reliable and practical exit strategy helps you feel empowered when you do go out into social situations.

We hope that these suggestions will help you enjoy a sober and relaxing Labor Day! For more information about de-stressing without alcohol, visit Awakenings Treatment Center.