Alcohol abstinence …1 year on

I’m sat writing this from the lofty heights of another flight back from Ibiza. The last 2 weeks have passed quickly and now I have yet more Balearic memories to add to my cerebral cortex. What’s even more surprising is how fast the year has gone by since I made the decision to give up drinking alcohol.

So what’s changed? Well I definitely look younger for a start. Although that could be also down to dietary improvements and drinking more water! I haven’t killed any brain cells so my memory and thinking is clearer, but most of all there have been no hang overs, so days that have been post nights out have been more productive. Include to that the added benefits of;

* Little to no cost financially during visits to bars/clubs.

* A rise in confidence from pushing myself into social interactions without any liquid courage. Which has also led to…

* The ability to have better control over different emotional states, meaning over shorter periods of time I can quickly ‘slide’ away from logical left brain thinking and into a more creative sociable headspace (right brain thinking) similar to what most people experience after 2 or 3 pints.

* An increase in willpower. It’s no longer a drawn out mental battle to talk myself out of having a drink. I simply remind myself that I have the ability to unwind without it and push myself to be sociable. Over time this has gotten easier and easier. Partly down to…

* Having lots of reference experiences over the course of the year that has basically given my brain the proof it needs to make the appeal of having a drink a lesser occurrence.

All in all only positive things can come from cutting down on alcohol consumption, and I expect over time that by pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone it will become even easier still to relax and have that carefree attitude that usually comes from the bottom of a bottle. That’s not to say I won’t EVER be drinking again, I’m sure there will come nights where having a drink will feel like a fun spare of the moment idea, it just won’t be happening regularly.

As a result so far, the consecutive alleviation of social anxiety that’s come from pushing myself into social situations without the use of alcohol has made it all worth while.