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Giving Up Alcohol – Week #1

Like many of us do at some point, I questioned my relationship with alcohol at the end of 2019. If you ask me, I’ve never had a drinking problem as such but I think I could totally drink less. Drinking for me was a simple ‘off switch’ when I’d leave work and a social thing to do with friends. But, and we’ll dive into it further in the coming weeks and months, I will be giving up alcohol for the year 2020.

Giving up alcohol for a full year.

I reckon I thought about a year without booze for two months straight before finally deciding it was the right thing to do. Sitting on our new front deck at the end of the day sipping on my favourite whiskey was fast becoming a favourite pastime. Being significantly introverted, I was even enjoying heading out with friends a lot more than previous years. Maybe I was being more responsible and drinking less, even with the slightly heavier sessions at the end of the year. There was a niggling in my brain I couldn’t shake. But a year was a long bloody time to go without something I really enjoy.

a couple of bottles of alcohol and a hip flask

Giving up alcohol for a year. @gorakphoto

The longest I’d given up alcohol was 100 days.

This is over 3 times that! All I can think is how silly this is. It was Yumi Stynes who first enticed me to try a month off. It was a chance encounter albeit through a tv but she mentioned she was doing FebFast. If she was doing it, so would I! It went well because I set goals and had a clear set of dates in which I could not consume any alcohol. That was probably 3 or 4 years ago. Between then and now I’ve tried with varying success to quit drinking. Back then, I was with the understanding that alcohol was a problem and I needed to ban it from my life. It was a very negative mindset.

A firm shift in thinking

Contemplating the challenge, a new way to view it was necessary. To put it simply, I did not want to give up alcohol because I enjoy having a drink too much. Instead, enlarging my goals and making them the focus for the next year made every bit of sense. Alcohol certainly wasn’t going to get me to those goals. With that epiphany, my mind was made up. I was giving up alcohol for 366 days. Yup, February has that extra day this year which is great for some people who actually get a birthday this year. Means this challenge will extra awesome, huh!

The first week without alcohol feels like.

The idea, decision and goals are still fresh. Understandably, I’m not really feeling much different. There’s been a few moments that felt like the right time to grab a drink but that is just more about the habit I formed. I’ve had a strange feeling in my gut for a few days which could be simply eating too much of the wrong thing or perhaps a small cry for whiskey from within. Also I’m a little lethargic, lacking the sugar rushes that would accompany a few drinks. A few small headaches and a slightly cloudy mind still persist a little but appear to be easing as the days pass.

In future posts…

Starting with weekly then perhaps monthly catch ups on how my journey is going, we’ll discuss in greater detail. From why the heck did I sign myself up for this to my goals and maybe even my drinking history. We’ll discuss events coming up that you could join in on or mention to your friends.

Be sure to please Comment Below

As I’m sure you’re aware, I’ll need all the encouragement I can get. I’d love to hear your own stories, kind words and anything you could add to my tales. Perhaps even let me know if there’s anything specific you’d like to hear about on my journey.

Thanks for making it this far. It’s hard to read on a screen. You’ve done well.