“You do not need to be a problem drinker to have a problem with drink”. You do not need to hit rock bottom to realise that your relationship with alcohol is not a healthy one. If you have a little voice in your head asking you “Do I drink too much?” This can be one of the first indications; you do have a problem that needs addressing. This is your consciousness or your soul speaking to you, listen to it. Discard those online quizzes that determine if you have a drink problem. Our drinking brain can be very selective about our answers and will find justification to continue to drink. “You are not that bad, why would you give up, you don’t have a problem!” Denial is the hallmark of a drink problem. Get online and research, there is so much information out there and knowledge is power.
The only piece of addiction we focus on globally is the tail end of addiction. At that stage you are at the critical end of the alcohol spectrum. This is a sad fact of our society, when someone has to reach rock bottom, before solutions are offered. Consider this phrase instead “Maybe, I have a drink problem”. Along with some of the following questions. Should I consider giving up the booze permanently? Do I need to seek help? Where do I go for help? Am I really that bad? Start to explore options for getting sober. You do not have to feel lonely; there is a lot of support out there.
Before I started my AF (alcohol free) journey, I had really started to question my relationship with drink. It was not the fact that I drank a vast amount but it was the fact that it was becoming a habit, that I could see was going to escalate if I did not address it.
I had started to dream about my drinking, about it getting out of hand and eventually leading me down a dangerous path. I think this was my sub conscious trying to alert me to what I was doing to myself and the affects that it was having on my body. My fist issue was where do I go to get help? I didn’t feel, I was bad enough to be attending AA. In my mind and just for the record this is only my own thoughts, there was a stigma about seeking help from AA. I live in a very rural part of the world where everybody knows everyone. I know three Men in my community who turned their lives around by attending AA so it can be a very good option for some, it’s funny I do not know of any Women that have attended AA! in my part of the world. But for me personally by attending AA I would be automatically labeling myself an alcoholic in my community.
What other options were there? My relationship with alcohol was my shameful secret and I felt I was on my own and scared. I started to research the topic “How to stop drinking without going to AA” I would read article upon article online and somewhere in this research I came upon the site BOOM or maybe it was a Boozemusings article I read that led me to this site.
From the advice of those that have trod the path before me, I now had some idea of where to start. There was advice on Quit Lit to read, Podcasts to listen to, what to expect along the way including the stumbling blocks, there is a community to cheer your conquests and offer support when you stumble. I thought there was only one way to become sober, but I soon discovered from BOOM that you could try many different paths to sobriety. I started to write a journal on my feelings, and by the way this was very alien to me. I do daily gratitude’s in my journal. I was prepared to try anything and everything to become AF. I did have a slip up at Christmas but the alcohol offered me nothing, I could see that it was a great anti-climax. So back on the Bandwagon again here is to day 26. Thank you BOOM.
There are those who just cannot get started or don’t know how to get started. It is a learning curve for all of us and no two of us will have the same journey. Someone had written recently that in the Morning they resolve to not drink today, but by the time they have finished work, they are already thinking about having their first drink of the day.
I think if we make the commitment to ourselves not to drink, which is our “GOAL” we need to really think about how we are going to approach it. “A GOAL WITHOUT A PLAN IS JUST A WISH” You cannot approach your next day’s with the same though patterns and do the exact same things you done day in and day out over the last day’s /months/years as you will get exactly the same outcomes.
Think about new ways to approach your new Day 1 Alcohol Free. What can I do today to ensure that I do not drink? This is a battle against a very highly addictive drug and it needs absolute resolve and a plan. When you do battle you need a plan. Should it be reading quit lit, journal every day on BOOM or in your own private journal, talking to someone you trust or taking up a new hobby as you really now need something, to occupy those drinking hours. Try something new try them all if need be. – more reading Demystifying Sober – Survival Guide From My First 10 Days Alcohol-Free
It is not going to be easy at first, you have been suppressing so much by drinking but it is worth it if you can just push through and stick with it. Remember “A Goal without a plan is just a Wish” So start planning and start living life to the full. – more reading How to Stop Drinking – Make This the Week That Your Sobriety Takes Off
When you start out on this journey, do not compare yourself to others. Just Remember – when you asked yourself Do I Drink Too Much? You answered YES. You can talk yourself out of owning your drinking problem i.e. “I am not as bad as so and so!!!” Problem drinking is not determined on quantity; these thoughts can allow us to justify our drinking or cause a relapse. – more reading But I can’t be an alcoholic! I didn’t hit rock bottom!
Take time for self-care. In the early stages, give yourself permission to eat chocolate to compensate for those sugar dips. Find your own routine. Go for walks, get in touch with nature, bond with your pet, light scented candles to lift the spirit, do whatever it takes to keep on track. – more reading Learning Self-Care in My First 100 Days Alcohol-Free
If you think about drink, play the tape forward. Think about how things will look if you do take a drink. It sure won’t look like fun. – more reading Play the Tape Forward – Protect Your Quit
Touch base with your support network, no matter how long you are sober. People that lapse will often state, they stopped the things that helped get them sober in the first place.
To everyone finding things
really difficult at the moment
who think no-one notices
who might be drinking
more that they would like
to cope with it all…
Hey I see you
Don’t worry though
It doesn’t show
You’re trying so hard
Why doesn’t anyone realise?
You’re juggling everything
And doing it so well
I can tell
But is that bottle of rose
Your reward for getting through your day
Going to help?
Will it take your cares away?
Or could it make things worse?
Could you maybe try and take a break from booze?
For a few days, weeks or whatever you choose?
Come here and talk to us in BOOM
It’s free, anonymous and
You’ve nothing to lose
There’s no commitment needed
Just people you could chat to
Who might just feel similar to you
You’re not alone
even if it seems that way
Why not click and join today?
If you’re “sober curious” … If you are drinking too much too often and want to stop or take a break…or if you have stopped drinking and are trying to stick to sober! Talk to Us.
We are an independent, anonymous and private community who share resources, support and talk it through every day. It helps to have a community behind you in a world where alcohol is the only addictive drug that people will question you for NOT using
community support 24-7 or sign up and sign in here
Don’t let the shame of the stigma keep you from saying
“I think I have a problem with drinking”