Tips for Sober Business Travel
Developing a daily routine helps people in recovery stay sober. Business travel interrupts this routine and can make sobriety more challenging at first. By planning and knowing which strategies help you the most, you can successfully travel for business and remain sober.
1. Plan Ahead
Maybe you already have a strategy for staying sober at home. Now it's just a matter of applying that strategy to your travel itinerary. For example, if you maintain an alcohol-free home, call the hotel in advance and ask that your room's minibar be completely alcohol-free or request a room without one. (Don't be embarrassed to make this request; hotels are used to it and won't think twice.)
If certain books or meditation tools help you refocus when stressed, bring them with you. If exercise is part of your routine for staying sober, come up with an exercise plan before you arrive, such as the route you'll run or the equipment you'll use at the hotel gym.
Try to recreate any other part of your routine that's important to you, whether that means finding a great café for your morning coffee or soaking in a hot bubble bath in the evening.
2. Give Yourself Extra Time
If you know you tend to drink alcohol when you feel stressed, do your best to schedule your trip so that you have plenty of time to catch connecting flights, rent a car, stand in line, sit in traffic, etc. When you don't feel rushed from one destination to the next, it's easier to stay calm and enjoy the experience.
Arrive at the airport well in advance, so you get off to a good start. Try to remember that you can't control many of the circumstances around you (such as delayed flights), but you can control how you react to them.
3. Stay Connected
There are always people in your corner ready to offer a listening ear or a pep talk when the going gets tough, even if you can't talk to them in person. Keep your phone well-charged on your trip, and don't hesitate to call your go-to friends and family members when needed. In fact, it can be helpful to incorporate a social check-in into your daily schedule. When you know someone expects to hear from you, you'll be more motivated to make the call.
Your Confidant team is also just a few taps away, day or night. Before your trip, discuss your provider strategies for sober business travel, how to stay on course, and after you come home to reflect on what worked and what didn't. Our app is also full of useful content to read or listen to any time you need a quick distraction.
4. Navigate the Social Events
Business trips sometimes involve cocktail parties or "wining and dining" with clients. You might be obligated to attend as part of your job, but you're never required to drink. Still, it's important to know what emotions or situations tend to make it more difficult for you to decline a drink, and then develop a strategy to avoid those triggers.
For example, it's always a good idea to eat before attending a cocktail party. Hunger makes you feel irritable and uncomfortable, and you might find yourself reaching for alcohol to soothe those sensations.
Let's talk about your specific situation and how to plan. Log in to the Confidant app now to get started!