Now giving up drinking alcohol is not for everyone, and I will not proclaim to bang on about the vices of booze. In moderation and at your own choice, drinking is great. However, some of us out there may need a few tips to help avoid tequila temptation (insert your poison here).
Once you have decided to stop drinking, you really must stick to it. For one reason or a billion, you may have decided that drinking is not really working for you anymore (me), and you want to take a long term break (me), stop forever (probably not me), or simply take a decent short term break, be it a week, a month or three months or longer. Either way, these tips may help you resist the temptation to smash back those bevies.
- Stick to your guns. Know that you have made a decision to better your health. Remind yourself of this when temptation strikes.
- Remind yourself how good you feel for not drinking. If it means you have to write out a list of pro’s for being alcohol free then do it. Trust me, your list will far extend the cons.
- Change your social patterns. Perhaps you go to the pub every Friday, or every Saturday night you go out dancing in the city and swig back a few bottles (of champagne), try and mix up your routines and do new activities. Think about getting up early Saturday and Sunday mornings to exercise, go to the beach, or go for a scenic nature walk somewhere nearby. Your body and mind will love you for it, and so will your bank balance.
- You might need to change your friends. Now I know this is a harsh truth, but if you hang out with people who want to get smashed every weekend, and week day for that matter, it might be time to look beyond and find new buddies who vary their actions slightly more. Choose friends who inspire you, motivate you, listen and support you. The world is full of great people, it is up to you who you choose to spend your precious time with.
- Get distracted. Distracting yourself from your train of thought of ‘I want a drink/I need a drink/where the hell is the nearest liquor store?’ kind of track is easy when you practise. Try going outside and do some gardening, go for a walk, read a book, but preferably do something physical.
- Pour yourself a favourite non-alcoholic drink. A clever switch-eroo, you are still drinking, but it’s not liquor. Often, we are thirsty, and that could be a trigger to wanting a beer, cider, wine, whatever. But really what you really need is a tall glass of iced water. Try adding some fresh lemon, or mint or cucumber to really make you feel healthy.
- Have a go to non-alcoholic drink. You need to be prepared. You need to have an automatic response for something healthier than booze. Mine is water with lime cordial. I drink more cordial than your average 7 year old. And I love it. Hey, bit of sugar never killed anyone.
- Go ahead and have a drink. If you are totally bowled over by temptation, just go ahead and bloody well drink. If it is pressing on your mind and giving you an aneurism over it, one or two drinks will not kill you. However it may cleverly remind you why you decided to stop drinking in the first place. This is exactly what happened to me. I decided to try it again and that was enough to remind me I didn’t really need it in my life again. Strange but true.
Our mind forgets what is good for us, annoyingly. We can talk ourselves into and out of anything, but you are your own guide in this life, the decision is entirely up to you. The key is moderation if you can handle it, most of us can’t, trumping that is elimination. The path you choose to walk in life is your own, I have worked out through my experience it is way better to do it sans alcohol. But hey, that is up to you.
Have you been tempted lately? I hope my tips have helped you in your journey.