Photo by Michael Discenza
Originally Posted On: https://www.stopdrinkingexpert.com/after-quitting-drinking/
Life After Quitting Drinking Rocks!
Now that you’ve decided to quit drinking, there are so many changes that await you.
Some of these changes might be instantly positive, some might turn your whole life around, some might be challenging, and some might need a lot of work. Some of them might require you to completely overhaul your life, providing a few plot twists on the road to unlocking better opportunities.
But one thing is for sure, quitting drinking is one of the greatest decisions you will make, and you’re in for a great new journey.
Here are the five things that’ll change once you’ve quit living a life ruled by alcoholism.
1. You’re going to have more time
Back then, I used to come home to a glass of wine after a stressful day at work. I feel burned out and I need a form of release to de-stress. My wine sits at the table waiting for me to pour myself a drink or seven. It’s like a huge, huge part of my nightly routine, and it seems almost impossible to break that vicious cycle.
Drinking has become such a huge, self-destructive part of me that I drink until I fall asleep as early as 8 pm, even without eating dinner. I’ll drink until I pass out. Then, I sleep for about 11 hours, only to wake up feeling that wave of fatigue sweeping over me, not to mention that heavy pounding in my head from the hangover. I literally had to drag myself to work only to repeat the same routine every single day.
But that was then and this is now!
Now, I wake up with seven hours of sleep full of energy and I feel empowered to have the courage finally break that vicious cycle.
Once you’ve quit drinking, you’ll find a lot of time in your hands. You’re gonna have to be ready to keep yourself busy so you don’t slip back to the old routine. The goal here is to prevent yourself from going into relapse.
Go start that business, go find a new hobby, go spend more time with your spouse and with your kids – you’ll find so many things much worthwhile than numbing yourself with alcohol. Believe me, it’s going to give you a sense of accomplishment to wake up knowing that you’ve finally stopped wasting your life away.
You’re going to have so much more time. The time that you can spend on improving things you used to neglect while you were stuck chugging bottles and bottles of alcohol.
Best to dedicate this time by finding a new thing to work on, such as immersing yourself in sports, martial arts, gardening or even try new things.
You get to have more time bonding with your children and with your family, and even more, time to focus on your career improvement. Time to go get that promotion, take your wife/husband on a vacation, or build a new treehouse for your kids.
It’s all about converting time into many valuable decisions.
2. Your relations are going to improve
Drinking might’ve led you to neglect your relationship with your family, your spouse and even your circle of friends.
Once you’ve stopped drinking, it’s time to make up for all the lost time. It’s time to reinvigorate your relationship with people that matter to you.
I’ve known quite a few married men and women who quit drinking which allowed them to rescue their marriage from the brink. They went from somebody who spent hours in the pub of an evening to a full-on family man, and nothing is more fulfilling than seeing them finding the happiness they can’t get from being drunk all the time.
But, as things go, it’s not going to be easy as it sounds.
The alcohol you are drinking might be masking problems you don’t tend to pay attention to, and now, drinking is no longer an option to ‘escape’ these issues.
It’s now a must to face them head-on.
Struggling with a failing marriage? Go get a marriage consultant to help you sort out the problems and issues you have been avoiding.
Fazed with a midlife crisis and thinking that you haven’t accomplished anything by your age? It’s not too late to get your head in the game and go get that career advancement.
Kids growing up so fast, that you missed all their younger years because you’re so drawn to drinking alcohol? It’s not too late to spend more time with your family during the weekends for a quick vacation.
You see, it can be such a beautiful thing to try and save your relationships after coming clean. You’re finally going to have this inner peace that you are now becoming a better person, and you’re ready to take more challenges as you go along improving yourself.
3. Your circle of friends is gonna change
Drinkers come in huge social networks. You automatically assume you have a lot of friends.
But when you’ve stopped drinking, you’ll realize that your drinking buddies are not really your friends. They are just there for the shared drug use.
They are there because of one thing – alcohol.
And you’ll begin to realize certain things, that these drinkers only enjoy drinking by seeing social proof that their “friends” are doing it too.
But there is no ‘safety in numbers’ when it comes to drinking poison for fun.
These beer pong friends don’t really care about you, let alone don’t care about you as an individual- you’re only befriended with them because you get drunk together.
And you’re gonna have to discard people like these from your life, completely. Before they ever convince you to have a drink together and find yourself spiraling down into a relapse.
4. You’re gonna have to re-evaluate and redefine your definition of fun
When I was a drinker, I used to think any place without alcohol is a huge waste of time. A place or event without drinks was immensely boring to me, and I have to have a drink to start engaging with people.
This was, of course, all a lie. Occasions don’t need alcohol to be fun and enjoyable, but rather drinkers are miserable when they can’t get access to their drug!
But then I stopped drinking, for good.
I find the usual places I visit when I was into heavy drinking a bit odd.
I used to think that these people are fun and full of humor.
And when I got sober, I was dumbfounded by the fact that these people are just wasting their lives away with alcohol. Doing things that they aren’t supposed to do, and aggravating their problems with poison. People that knew the negative sides of cognitive dissonance, but keep suppressing the cautious voice in their head by drinking even more alcohol.
I decided this is no longer my definition of fun.
So, I went ahead to explore more things with my family. A trail on forest parks, walking the dog with my kids, a time with my wife on a romantic dinner – and that changed my perspective of fun.
Find out what makes you immensely happy. Find what intrinsic happiness is- is that a fulfilling career? Celebrating your anniversary near the Northern Lights? A candlelit dinner with your spouse? A baking and cooking weekend with your kids?
You can now finally view happiness from a new perspective, without the dangers of drinking alcohol and being on a relapse.
5. You literally will start changing
People will think you’re on something, ironically.
People will begin to notice subtle changes and begin to wonder what’s going on, and that’s completely okay.
Now is your time.
- Work towards the amazing life that you are capable of.
- Get that promotion, save more money, augment your income, take your spouse on vacation and enjoy family trips together.
- Time to get money right and start working to getting your dream home.
- Spend your disposable income on life insurance policies and more informed financial decisions than wasting it away for a happy hour in your nearest bar.
- Time to work on that business you’ve been putting off for years.
- Time to free up more time to live life to the fullest.
If you want to be completely free from the vicious cycle of binge and habitual drinking – you might need a supportive circle, and that’s where I come in.
You need a guide to finding your sobriety, happiness, and peace of mind, without the need for a bottle or two.