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If you are someone that regularly relies on having a drink in the evening because it helps you to unwind, have you started thinking about how much you actually drink? Perhaps you have been experiencing some negative health effects or you are taking inspiration from many people that go without alcohol for a month, such as “Dry January.” Whatever it is, if you are looking to cut back on your alcohol intake, how can you do it effectively?
It is a little thing but you might be surprised as to how much you actually drink. If you are looking to gain some perspective on the situation, you can start to see how many drinks you consume during the space of a week. You can then measure an appropriate goal.
It can also help to see what sort of drinks you tend to consume during certain situations, such as parties. You can then make swaps so you are still consuming the drink but an alcohol-free version. There are so many different varieties of alcohol-free beers, gins, and wines out there, but you can also make your own concoctions if you like cocktails. For example, you can make jungle juice, a popular college drink, without alcohol. Alcohol-free drinks are easier to come by these days, and it can be a perfect stepping-stone to reducing your alcohol intake.
If you want to quit drinking altogether, it’s a good idea to avoid situations where you tend to consume alcohol. These can be certain activities or places, or even people, that act as triggers that urge you to drink. By avoiding these triggers in the short-term can prevent you from drinking. If it’s a social situation you can consume alcohol-free drinks, but it’s also important to get your mental strength in check. If you feel that you are going to consume alcohol when you go to a party because you don’t have the will to stop yourself, it might be better to avoid it altogether in the short-term.
If you have a reliance on alcohol and drinking has become a big part of your life, it might be time to substitute other activities where you would normally be drinking. While there are many debates as to how effective swapping one compulsion is for, potentially, another, when you choose the right activity, it is going to benefit your life. For example, if you take up a hobby or make new friends, or even spend more time with your family, it’s going to be something that you enjoy that will occupy the time when you are normally consuming alcohol.
Going without alcohol is a challenge for many people. People are used to having it as a crutch. And there is no shame in saying that you need help if you feel you cannot cut down. Having the strength to admit that you have a dependency on alcohol can put the wheels in motion to set things right.