When I decided to finally stop drinking ethanol, I found journaling to be a great way to process what was going on – all of the changes I was undergoing, and the huge ephiphanies that were occurring almost daily during those first couple of months. It’s also a great way to keep accountable. The reason I’m sharing this very personal content is that I feel that my sharing could be helpful to someone else, and if sharing helps just one person, it’s worth it.
If you are interested in getting free of ethanol addiction, I think it would be most helpful if you read This Naked Mind by Annie Grace. And then read my blogs in their numbered order. I’ll be updating helpful Resources often, too. When I look back, I can see just how much more simplified my thinking has become as it evolved around the whole deal. The fact is, when you first stop, your head will play huge games with you just to keep that “little monster” fed. All you need to do is be mindful and starve the little bastard.
No Shame There is no shame or need for anonymity about getting addicted or being addicted to ethanol. Anyone can get addicted because it is the nature of the substance itself. It doesn’t matter whether your poison of choice is wine or beer, or rocket fuel, it’s all the same: ethanol. Some people get addicted more quickly than others; some take years and years to develop their addiction. Some people make an occupation of moderating their intake – which is more work than simply stopping! If you are reading this because you are considering stopping, I can bet you are drinking more today than you did last year. There’s nothing wrong with you. It’s the nature of the beast.
It is not a disease, and there’s nothing to be ashamed of. You are not defective. Fact is, a substance that is part of our centuries-old dysfunctional heritage and is heavily marketed to make us feel that we can’t experience happiness and inclusion without it, is actually a highly addictive substance that happens to be legal. And don’t get me started about the disease model the addiction industry is selling…
I don’t know about you, but I was raised in a deep drinking culture. First we had the lost generation of post-WWI drinkers (and all of those great writers who created drama out of their drunken confusion), then we had the “Mad Men” culture of the 50s with the panache of cigarettes and martinis. Now we have the “wine and brew” earthy “it’s good for you” and “mommy time” culture. Nobody gets out alive.
When imbibing, we don’t necessarily realize it, but what we are doing is deadening our senses so we don’t have to feel basic human feelings, frustration or discomfort. And although we might mask those feelings for a few fleeting moments, they’re still there waiting to be felt. Ethanol is a broad-spectrum feeling exterminator. While briefly exterminating the unpleasant stuff, we also exterminate the joy that is our true nature.
If you’re anything like I was, the idea of stopping drinking may seem totally complicated and impossible at this point in time. Believe me, I thought I was going to drink until the day I died. But, I stopped! And if I can stop, so can you. Read my blogs in order, and you might just change the way you think about ethanol, too.