I am a booze hound.
Ever since university I’ve struggled with alcohol.
Not starting the day with a swig of gin.
But definitely drinking every day.
And drinking more than I’d like.
Oh and the hangovers.
We don’t need to go into them.
Having a 5 year career detour as a wine maker didn’t help.
But there’s a happy end to this story!
And even better it doesn’t involve me cutting out drinking completely.
I’ve tried that. It didn’t work for the long term.
I’ve actually found a way to enjoy a glass of wine with a meal and leave it at that.
To feel completely satisfied. In control.
And completely hangover-free!
I know. I can hardly believe I’m writing this.
How I Tamed My Biggest Vice
1. Planning Alcohol in Advance
The first strategy I adopted after listening to Brooke Castillo’s podcast on how to Stop Over-Drinking.
It’s a simple yet incredibly powerful tool.
The idea is to plan what you’re going to drink in advance. When you’re cool and calm and remember the concept of things like hangovers.
Ideally I’d do it 24 hours ahead but sometimes it would be just before I’d start drinking.
It made a massive, massive difference.
2. Adopting ‘Personal Rules’
Personal rules are a concept I’ve used to make and keep positive changes in my life.
They’ve helped my coaching clients too.
Basically it’s creating ‘rules’ for yourself so you don’t need to make decisions in the moment.
I love this idea because it makes sticking to your resolutions so much easier.
The two personal rules I adopted first were:
1. ‘I don’t start drinking until I’m sitting at the table with a meal’
2. ‘I plan my alcohol in advance’
These were enough to radically transform my drinking.
And while I occasionally did have more than my ‘planned amount’, I was able to be hangover-free for over 18-months.
But there were still times I drank more than I wanted to.
So at Christmas I introduced two new personal rules:
1. ‘I only drink 1 glass of wine at lunch.’
2. ‘I only drink 2 glasses of wine with dinner.’
And I haven’t looked back.
Sure there are times I’ve thought ‘I’d like another glass’. But when I remember my personal rules I’ve found it easy to stop and have a cup of tea, kombucha or sparkling water instead.
I can say with joy in my heart, I’m NOT a booze hound any more.
I AM someone who enjoys drinking wine with a meal.
Without over-doing it.
UPDATE: There were few people who left comments saying that drinking 3 glasses of wine a day isn’t very moderate! I agree! So just wanted to clarify, my 1 glass for lunch / 2 for dinner rules are on the days that I am drinking. Usually Wednesday for lunch with my Dad and Saturday night for dinner with my Irishman. Occasionally I’ll have alcohol on another day during the week but mostly I’m alcohol free for the other 5 days (which I still can’t believe!)
What about you?
Is alcohol something you struggle with? Is there anything here you think might be helpful for your situation?
I’d love to hear about it in the comments below :)
Have fun at the dining table (with just 1 glass of wine)!