We’re at that time of year again where we’re persuaded to give up alcohol for a month. Many of us will have tried, and perhaps failed, in January, and it’s now time to Go Sober For October. But can you do it?
It can be a difficult task, giving up those Saturday afternoon pints or weekday wines after a stressful day at work. But there is also a bigger point to be made with it too. Especially in this day and age.
More and more people are seeking to get help with addiction treatment, with alcohol rehab centres seeing more patients as a result of things like the pandemic, cost-of-living and the political landscape in the UK, and not being able to give up alcohol for a month could suggest that maybe our own relationships with alcohol are a little problematic.
If you’re taking part in staying Sober For October, and need a little guidance on how to get through it, here are four top tips for you to try…
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Don’t give up drinking, give up alcohol
A tactic that does work for many is not giving up on going to the pub or drinking to relax of an evening, but instead replacing what you would normally drink with an alcohol free alternative.
There are some fantastic non-alcoholic beers on the market today, with most craft beer breweries offering some form of alternative. Not only can they be ideal replacements, you may decide to stick with them from here on in. They’re better for your health, after all.
Plan different activities
While you might typically meet your friends in the pub, for one month offer up some different activities to enjoy. Think of it as a great way to start a new tradition or find some new hobbies rather than having to compromise.
There are some great options, from going to a running club or dance class if you like to be active, to doing something like bowling, the cinema or even getting crafty and taking up an artistic course. There are so many options. Think of your interests, and take it from there.
Don’t do it alone
One of the best pieces of advice is to simply not do it alone. Going sober for a month can be challenging. It can also feel quite lonely and a little bit pointless if you are doing it alone, making it much easier to give up.
By doing it with someone, or as part of a group of people, you’ll find there’s more accountability on your side, but also you will have a support network for when it does get a little bit tougher.
Offer yourself a reward
You will undoubtedly save money throughout this month, particularly if you are a regular drinker, heavy drinker or prefer to taste the finer things in life. Use the money you will save across the month to provide yourself with a reward if you make it.
Obviously, what you can reward yourself with is dependent on how much you save, but it can be a good piece of encouragement to get through right to the end. Go on, treat yourself. You’ve earned it…
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