Today is April 12th 2021 and once again we find the world opening up after the latest lockdown due to Covid-19. Whilst that sees many people in the UK que to raid Primark, it also sees many Brits do what they do best – DRINK.
Going alcohol free in the midst of a pandemic is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing as we have been able to lock ourselves away to kick the booze in the comfort of our own homes, away from the temptations of social situations and the lure of the pub. A curse because many of us have not yet had the chance to test our metal in social situations or trigger hot spots such as bars and restaurants.
Whilst the fear of temptation is a scary and real threat to sobriety, life is to be lived and not feared. I was fortunate enough to have been out many times between lockdowns. It wasnt always easy but when prepared it is actually an enjoyable and liberating experience.
Here’s my tips for enjoying your post lockdown freedom whilst remaining sober.
- Be prepared – or prepare to fail. Preparation is the key here. If you have been invited out make sure you are in the right frame of mind to venture into situations where booze may be involved. If you are tired, hungry or thinking about drinking – don’t tempt it. You should be going out to enjoy yourself, not torture yourself.
- Check out where your going ahead of time. It’s always worth seeing what snacks are available (gives you something to do and wards off being hangry. Hangry and sober is never good) Check out the alcohol free options and plan ahead.
- Don’t like what’s on offer? Suggest a change of venue.
- Have an exit strategy. No one says you have to stay the whole evening. Maybe suggest driving and always have a plan for if things get messy.
- Try to be honest with people. Its always worth being honest with people as to why your not drinking and to tell them why not drinking is important to you. If people can’t support you in wanting a happier and heathier life – maybe they have a problem. The problem isn’t you.
- Remember why you are sober. Think back to all the hangovers, the fights, the embarrassment’s, the bad choices. THE HANXIETY. Then remember what it feels like to wake up with a clear head and no anxiety
- Remember the hangover. Yes, enough said.
- It may be hard. But remember that feelings pass. Play the tape forward. You will never regret being sober in the morning.
- You can have fun. You can and will have fun. Maybe not the first few times, for many people years of boozing has meant that we have forgotten to be carefree without booze. Being sober isn’t a prison sentence, its a liberating, freeing existence. But being sober in social situations can take a bit of practice. Do things on your terms.
You deserve to live a happy and healthy life free of shackles. The pub isn’t the only thing on offer post lockdown, it brings so many new opportunities our way too. Take the class you have always fancies taking, visit that museum or art gallery, do that hike, fly that plane. Do what makes your heart soar. We have such a small time on this earth, make it count. There is more to life than the pub.