9 February 2021 — DrinkCoach
DrinkCoach asked Will, Alcohol Advisor from the West Sussex Wellbeing Team to document his new year’s resolution to cut back on alcohol. Read his series of blogs throughout Dry January
A change is gonna come
I’m beginning to see the impact. A 14 unit week and I feel great. It’s now not about what I have lost but what I have gained. The spectre of booze has diminished, it’s not in the rear view mirror of my mind anymore.
I realised that from Monday to Thursday I didn’t drink once and not only that I didn’t even think about it. Not once. Other things now take the place where alcohol once stood. Stressed, I’ll go for a run; feeling like I need a pick me up, I’ll call a friend; want to switch off from the world, I’ll paint a picture. Anything that alcohol can offer I can replace with something else and a bit of discipline. The adverse effects alcohol had on my body were numerous, physiologically and mentally. And now it feels like a gift to be getting them back. Just the amount of energy I now have has completely changed my life.
My sleep has improved giving me more energy in the day. The reduction in calories has left me feeling lighter and I’m convinced my trousers are now looser. It’s a domino effect that has spread out across my life. I have noticed it and others have too. Friends and family have commented that I seem much happier. I am much happier.
So now it’s a case of maintenance. I can do 14 units a week. I just proved to myself that I can. Now maybe I won’t be able to do it every week, but I can aim to. I can hold onto this feeling, this is how I am supposed to feel.
I will need to remain focused to avoid the slow creep. Complacency can be a real killer and I need to stay alert, especially through what could be another tough year ahead. I have learned a lot about myself this month, what I need and what works for me. I have had to become honest with myself. Introspection can be tough and sometimes unpleasant. The knowledge I have gained from this though has led to me making impactful changes to my life. I have created a huge toolkit of strategies to apply to myself and importantly I know I can make these changes.
As I write this Frank Turner’s song “Be More Kind” has come on the radio and it is a message I need to carry forward with myself on this journey, to be more kind, mainly to myself. Life is hard, especially at the moment, and we will all make mistakes and no doubt at some point in the future I will wake up with a stinking hangover and a heavy sense of regret. That doesn’t mean I’ve failed, it just means that things didn’t go right on that day. But there will be more days for me to get it right and I will get it right. Don’t let perfect get in the way of really good.
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