Drinking has become such a non-issue for me that I tend to forget there are millions of people going through the process of stopping at any given time, and I can share my experience to help make it a little easier. I meant to post in early November as that’s when I hit seven years free and clear. I never counted days, and pretty much forgot about it once I got over the initial obsession needed to stop.
That obsession about all things alcohol went away around the first year and a half of abstinence. Now I hardly ever think about it, which is why I rarely post.
But as the holidays approach, I do remember going through that first round of milestones, holidays, weddings, parties, and dining out. It felt like a big deal. If you my read early posts, you’ll see what I mean.
As I write this, I’m sipping my evening cocktail. I call it a cocktail now but when I was stopping I named it switchflipper, and that new name helped me enjoy an ethanol-free cocktail habit with all of the benefits and none of the detriments. There was a time when making interesting ethanol-free drinks was a creative gourmet distraction that really worked for me.
My favorite cocktail these days is 3/4 sparkling water, 1/4 Fever Tree cucumber tonic, a couple drops of juniper berry extract and a dash of Regan’s orange bitters. Yes, there’s a trace of ethanol in my drink, but it isn’t drinking to me. I am not afraid to cook with wine and sherry; I might have a sip of wine with an exquisite meal, or a couple sips of champagne at a wedding. That doesn’t make me a drinker. Alcohol just has no power; it was put in its place once and for all.
I realize there are some people who have to swear off even the smallest taste of booze, and I respect that. But in my case, the idea of tiptoeing around in a state of fearful avoidance was much more dangerous than just forgetting about it. I’m not obsessed about doing or not doing; I simply don’t. My holiday wish for you is to enjoy an easy and comfortable way of being.
If you’re still in the throes of stopping, I recommend This Naked Mind and all of the resources Annie Grace offers. The book and Facebook group brought valuable support when I was in the process of stopping.
I recently got an email from Annie with all sorts of new resources. You can always go to This Naked Mind site and click on Free Resources for encouragement and strategies.
And a live webinar: https://tnmclass.com/ag-web-registration
A moderation freebie where you can download your copy of “Six Vital Things You Need to Know About Moderation” to uncover the 6 key elements of your unconscious mind that keep you addicted when trying to moderate.
It’s easier than you think when you start to relax around it.
Enjoy being present to the moment. Happy Holidays!