I did it! I made it 365 without drinking. Here’s a few quick tips concerning how I did it and what the results have been.
I gave up drinking at 11:59pm on December 31, 2018. I set down the glass and that was it. I didn’t toss out all of the alcohol in the house, or force my family to change their habits, or avoid bars/parties/bbqs/etc. I just stopped, and that was it.
Here are a few tips that might help you do the same:
If you want to give up drinking for a year, you need to mentally prepare for it. I made the decision to do it two months before I started, spoke with my wife about it, then told other people I was doing it before I began. Being “public” about it isn’t totally necessary, but it will assist you in committing to the action mentally.
There are two reasons to list your reasons: #1 people are going to ask; #2 you need to justify the commitment to yourself.
The reasons could be health, work, family, religion, etc. For me, it was mainly about energy… I wanted to work harder, longer, and smarter, and the easiest way I could think of accomplishing the task was to stop consuming depressants (duh).
The more you think about it, the harder it will be. While the act of giving up alcohol will be tough for a little bit, you’ll get used to it. It’s not the end of the world… it’s not heroic… it’s just something you’re doing for yourself. Good for you. Move on.
Here is a quick list of things you can expect throughout the process of giving up alcohol for a year:
Here are some of the results that I can directly or indirectly attribute to giving up alcohol for a year (these are not in order of importance):
I know many people who have given up alcohol for a time and never went back… I am not one of those people.
I believe that our body’s reaction to this particular poison (and in all aspects alcohol IS a toxic substance to the human physiology) is a happy little miracle of nature that should be enjoyed responsibly.
While I appreciate the energy and vitality I feel while 100% sober all of the time, it can also be very stressful and mentally draining. I have no “off” switch, and this experience reminded me of how intense and relentless my thought processes naturally are.
I look forward to relaxing with friends and family again :)