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Enjoying a Sober Summer: Embracing Fun and Wellness on Vacation

Summer travel is up nearly 20% percent from last year with more than 80% percent of Americans planning a vacation, and slightly less than half of these vacationers expect to take more than one.

The anticipation of and planning for a summer get-away can be exciting, but vacation time can provide challenges around sobriety, too. Here are a few recommendations from MiraVista Behavioral Health Center to stay recovery-strong on a summer break while enjoying all its adventure and relaxation.

Prioritize Self-Care: Vacation is not a break from self-care. Take time to exercise, select healthy menu choices, and get quality sleep. Self-care is the foundation of your recovery. It travels with you wherever you go!

Explore Sober Fun: Vacations bring the fun of new experiences and there is much to enjoy without substance use. Look for sober activities that align with your interests. Go hiking, try a new water sport, visit local landmarks, and journal about it at day’s end.

Plan Ahead for Triggers: Identify potential triggers that may arise during your vacation and plan accordingly. If certain places or situations make you uncomfortable, create alternative plans or avoid them altogether. Have coping strategies in place to manage any unexpected triggers that might come up. Your well-being comes first.

Practice Mindfulness: Embrace the present moment during your vacation. Engage all your senses and fully experience the beauty around you. Mindfulness will help you appreciate your progress and strengthen your commitment to recovery. Be present, savor each moment, and let gratitude guide your journey.

Stay connected: Traveling doesn’t mean leaving behind a support network. Connecting to services via one’s smartphone or computer helps sustain sobriety. Update and keep accessible your contact list of trusted friends and relatives, valued sponsors/peer recovery specialists, as well as therapists whom you can reach out to if needed through email, text, or phone. Visit Alcoholics Anonymous at, Narcotics Anonymous,, and Al-Anon,, to access virtual meetings and other recovery support.

Milestones: If your vacation coincides with a recovery milestone or anniversary, use this time to reflect and celebrate how far you’ve come. Treat yourself to something special — a symbolic souvenir, a meaningful activity, or a journal entry commemorating your achievements. You deserve to acknowledge your progress.

By prioritizing your well-being, staying connected, and embracing the present moment, you can have an incredible vacation while sustaining your recovery.

Discover more about MiraVista’s outpatient substance use treatment options by calling 413-701-2600 option 3.

MiraVista Behavioral Health Center opened in April of 2021 on the grounds of the former Providence Behavioral Health Hospital in Holyoke, Mass. MiraVista offers psychiatric care

services for both adults and adolescents, as well as an array of recovery rehabilitation programs including outpatient services such as substance use individual and group counseling, an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP), court-ordered services, and outpatient Medication Supported Recovery and Massachusetts Impaired Driving programs.

MiraVista cares for thousands of individuals from across New England. MiraVista’s purpose is to provide effective, inspiring care for those challenged by mental health and substance use so they are empowered to lead fulfilling lives.