Since beginning my quest to help others change their relationship with alcohol, be that to stop completely or just cut down, I have came across suggestions and resources to that have been useful…and have collected them here.
The focus here is really to help as many people as possible to reduce or stop drinking alcohol. Stopping completely can be so final and so scary – I totally get that, and lived with similar vews for the 20+ years of living as a ‘functioning alcoholic’. I choose that term, not that I fully buy into these terms or labels, but if any label fits me – the that was the one.
To the outside world, I was functioning. Doing quite well, living my life, creating and supporting a family and doing well in my career. Alcohol was not really affecting the basics – from the outside. For years, a lot of people close to me did not realise the extent of alcohol I was consuming on a daily bases. Towards my 30s when I spent more time with my wife and children, they were really the only ones who physically saw how much I consumed. And as the kids were quite young, saw dad going to work and the gym, they didn’t really get the amount dad was drinking. My wife (bizarrely) was a practical tee-totaller, but she was aware that alcohol intake was increasing at alarming rates through out the second decade of my drinking career, although the first decade was pretty heavy too. I won’t go on too much about me here, but you can read my story to get an idea of who I am and who got me to where I am today.
Finding your alcohol off switch, you may well continue to drink but learn how to stop when you have had enough. Or it may see you just having an amount at certain times of your life. Or it could do something that just stops you from drinking, as it did me.
The approach is to challenge every aspect of what alcohol is, and what alcohol is not.
Along the way, we all have our own goals when it comes to what part we want alcohol to play in our lives. My goal was to reduce how much I have drunk and stop the need to be drinking daily. My goal was not to stop completely, but as I looked with a totally unbiased approach (and that in itself is a learning curve), I found that I just stopped drinking. Completely. Not one pang or desire to drink again. Strange territory for me as alcohol has been involved in almost every aspect of making who I am today. I am not saying that this will be where you will be. Although I have over 10 years working with people with addictions – and my own personal experiences with this approach – I cannot guarantee results.
What I hope to do is that you will learn to challenge yourself, challenge your beliefs about alcohol – and from there you will re-assess and evaluate what part of your life alcohol plays.
I am driving home and stop at the off license. I go straight in and have in the back of my mind what strength beer I want and roughly how many I want for the day/night. Sometimes it is day, sometimes it is night, and more and more often it is in the morning.
I am weighing up how many beers I need to see me through the night. Beer, not spirits. Spirits taste disgusting and beer lasts longer, and beer is cheaper.
If life is allowing it (any work or family commitments) then I will drink earlier in the day. Once I have a drink then I can relax, knowing that I don’t have to ‘do anything’ for the rest of the day.
This could be any day of the week, and any week of the year. At first it was fun drinking in the morning, writing the day off and not worrying about any real responsibilities other than making sure the kids were fed.
This has gone on for as long as I remember – more than 14 years like this as my son is now 15 and definitely most of the time he has been on the earth.
Often, health worries related to drinking pop in my head. Cancer. Liver failure. Death. How can I explain to my children what I have done to myself.
Alcohol is now no longer a part of my life, and life has never felt better. Alcohol was draining my life of the things that it promised it would enhance – excitement, fun, relaxation, relationships.
I know that reading this, you think that it is just impossible to fathom, but that is absolutely fine.
I will show you how you can also rid alcohol from your own life.
Find your alcohol off switch – how and why it works