Drinks Tonight? Why are you Saying Yes?

Drinks tonight?

I wrote this before I had my last few drinks. I think it’s worth posting as it not only applies to my drinking escapades, but to decisions in general life.

When I get close to myself, why do I always run away? That question has gone round and round my head on repeat this morning and I do not know the answer.

But yet here I am. Sitting once again on a Sunday morning. Hungover. Hungover because I said “yes” to drinks four times over. Not crazy hungover. Not I had a terrible night and want to run away and hide forever hungover. But a little bit fuzzy, a little bit raw around the edges hungover.

Hungover even though I knew deep down I really didn’t want to drink those drinks.

These last two nights of drinking – of way too many drinks – were they worth it? They were fun. But I can have fun in other ways, and is life all about fun anyway?

Fun is only one factor in life that contributes to our overall wheel of wellbeing. There’s an entire conglomerate of factors that build us up to be happy, whole people. Money, relationships, work, spirituality, sex, stability. So why am I so inclined to choose short term satisfaction ahead of long term well being?

Why does ‘fun’ stick out as the one thing that I am lacking when I decide not to do something one night?

There’s a little voice in my head, I guess some might call it my ego. This voice says you are not fun, you need booze to interact, go on drinking won’t hurt, be the person you’ve always been. The girl who likes wine and prosecco, the life and soul of the party.

This from Hip Sobriety quietens that voice in my head:

“You are allowed to change.You are allowed to not be that anymore.You are allowed to be whatever it is you want to be, at any moment you want to be it.There are no social pacts. There are no rules. There is nothing set in stone, ever.”

For sure, drinking at the weekend is an ingrained part of Saturday night – and Friday night’s, and increasingly Thursday’s for that matter.

How do we work our way out of this? Not only for those who want to stop drinking completely, but for those who want to drink more mindfully, to do more and drink less?

Wisdom says choose new friends, find new people to hang out with but I feel so much resistance to starting my life over again.

There must be a way to make this work where you lose some relationships, but keep the great ones. My choice to not drink, or to drink less, is changing me – not the people around me. And, as Holly’s quote says “there are no rules. There is nothing set in stone, ever.” We get to be whoever we want to be, and to redefine ourselves time and time again.

Start small. Next steps.

Next time someone offers you a drink (or drinks), stop and notice your reaction. Do you instantly say yes? Do you feel initial resistance and then say yes anyway? Do you say no?
You don’t have to change your behaviour, just take the time to notice how you feel. If you do say yes, have a think as to why.
Bonus points if you write it down.

In the past, a yes to the pub – or a yes to a glass of wine or boozy brunch – was a yes because I was resistant to being “left out”. Drilling right down into that feeling, and it took me at least 10 hours of therapy sessions to get even close to here, I’m afraid of being left out because I’m scared of not being lovable. Something deep down in me says “you are not lovable” and it pushes me to be involved, to want to drink, to try and be with the people I love all the time to make sure they don’t forget about me and they still love me.

Why do you say yes?

Be kind to yourself. We don’t change overnight (or at least I don’t). If you’re looking to stop drinking, or cut down, these alcohol free resources may help.

All my love, L xx

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