Alcoholism, like many other addictions, sneaks up on a person. In the blink of an eye you go from a casual social drinker to a person who has alcohol for breakfast, lunch and dinner and cannot function without alcohol in your life.
Alcohol dependence can decrease the survival of your finances, family, career and life. If you feel you have reached a point in your alcohol consumption where you can no longer control your desire and drinking habits, it is probably time to get help.
Additionally, getting off alcohol will likely benefit your life in more ways than one. Without alcohol you sleep better and wake feeling refreshed. Without alcohol you are more productive at work and home and are more likely to achieve your dreams. Here are some tips to stop drinking.
Commit to Stopping
Stopping drinking requires a certain amount of commitment. It takes a strong resolve as well as effort and practice in self-control. Struggling with denial and bad habits is a big hurdle to get over. Making excuses and dragging your feet is common in the initial efforts to quit. If you are having difficulty quitting, it can help to set a constant reminder of the benefits of quitting.
Remind yourself of the money you save through abstinence. Also, think of the less obvious costs. Alcohol causes you to be drowsy and less alert the day after which can negatively affect your work. Drinking also inhibits rational thinking and makes you more prone to accidents.
Set a Goal
Setting a goal is important too. Having a strong resolve is more effective when you have something to work towards. Put all the money you save from not buying alcohol into a savings account and get that vacation to Hawaii you’ve always wanted to take or pay off some debt and get that job you’ve always wanted to do. Alcohol prevents you from achieving your dreams.
Find a Purpose
What is your reason for quitting? Is it for your health, finances, job, family or general happiness? What positive change do you want to see through quitting? Whatever your purpose for quitting, having a strong purpose makes it easy to follow through.
Get Rid of Temptations
Remove all alcoholic substances from your house. Avoid bars and parties which you know will have alcohol. Putting yourself in an environment where there is heavy drinking while you are trying to quit is an extreme test of strength.
Over time it will be easier and easier to be in environments with alcohol, but at first it helps to stay away in order to resist temptation. Most people have lives outside of alcoholic functions, so meet friends for dinner or coffee. Join a gym and go exercise with friends. You don’t need to drink to have fun.
Avoid Bad Influences
Friends who refuse to hang out unless alcohol is involved are not friends. There is more to living than getting drunk. Realize that people who cannot see past alcohol for fun aren’t the types of people who will help you to achieve your goals and purposes.
Keep a Diary
Finally, it can help to keep a diary of your alcoholic consumption. Keeping an accurate record of the amount of drinks you have had serves as a reminder of how you are doing on cutting back. Keeping a record can also help you determine if you can tackle your addiction on your own or not. There is no shame in asking for help or going to a rehabilitation center.
Help Guide.org A Trusted Non-Profit Resource: Alcohol Addiction Treatment & Self-Help http://www.helpguide.org/mental/alcohol_abuse_alcoholism_help_treatment_prevention.htm