The Benefits of Giving Up Alcohol
Giving up booze isn’t easy. Alcohol is almost impossible to get away from – you’ll find it being drank at every social function, served in every restaurant and sold in every grocery store. It’s even advertised on the TV.
That said, there are many people out there that have given it up. There are different reasons behind this – for some alcohol becomes a harmful addiction, whilst others may simply be looking to live a healthier lifestyle.
Going teetotal is more of a challenge for those that drink regularly. Drinking can become a major part of one’s lifestyle and can even affect the people we hang around with and the activities we do. To help make giving up alcohol easier, here are just several steps that you can take.
Focus on the benefits of giving up
One of the biggest things that stops people from giving up is that they focus too much on the benefits of drinking, instead of the benefits of giving up. Alcohol can make many of us more confident and carefree, which can help to overcome stress and anxiety. However, the benefits of giving up can outweigh this.
Quitting alcohol can help reduce the risk of various health problems, it can put an end to hangovers, it can save you money and it can allow you to drive places freely. By focusing on these benefits – the fact that it can make you healthier, wealthier, more productive and more in control – can help you to stay focused.
Surround yourself with the right people
You need to be around people that support your decision to stop drinking. People that seem intent on encouraging you to drink are negative influences and you should limit contact with these people. This will allow you to stay focused, while also telling the people around you that they need to change their attitude if they still want to hang out with you.
Try non-alcoholic substitutes
Whilst some people find it easier to stick to water and soft drinks, many people miss the taste of alcoholic drinks. Non-alcoholic beers, ciders and wines can help to fill this gap – there’s a greater range of these drinks than ever before which you can shop for at The Alcohol Free Shop. Non-alcoholic drinks can also help you to fit in – you can put a non-alcoholic beer in a glass and no-one will know the difference, preventing yourself from having to explain yourself to judgemental drinkers (of which there are a lot).
Be the designated driver
When travelling to parties or restaurants or places that may have alcohol, consider driving your car to get there. This will force you to not drink. Consider also volunteering to drop people back home – this will stop you abandoning your car there and giving in to drink as you’ll have the responsibility of someone else to look out for.
Decide whether you need professional support
In the case of a serious addiction, you may need professional help to give up drinking. It’s common for alcoholics to suffer from withdrawal symptoms, which has been known to cause seizures in some people.
With professional help, you can safely wean yourself off of alcohol. The likes of New Bridge Foundation offer detox services and rehabilitation. You may find that joining a support group also helps.
Record your progress
Recording your progress when giving up can prevent you from relapsing by helping you to aim for milestones such as a week, a month and a year without drinking. There are apps like EasiQuit that can help you to do this. Alternatively, you may prefer to tick off days on a calendar. Seeing how far you’ve come will motivate you to keep it up.
Learn to have fun sober
Being teetotal doesn’t have to be boring. There are many fun things that don’t involve alcohol. Even going out to a nightclub or bar can still be fun – you can play bar games, talk to people and dance all without having to drink. Whatever you do, make sure that you don’t substitute alcohol with other drugs, otherwise you’re just taking up a new unhealthy form of addiction.