If this is your first time giving booze the boot, it can be quite overwhelming. You might find yourself thinking about drinking more than you would have if you weren’t trying to give your liver a well needed break. Rest assured, this is to be expected.
Dry January is an amazing opportunity to check in with yourself and your relationship with alcohol, and maybe, just maybe, sobriety might stick. You know we aren’t preachy about this sort of thing, but the facts are there (science doesn’t lie), getting rid of alcohol from your life makes you happier, healthier and …well, you know the rest. We are all adults here and you are perfectly able to make up your own minds about going sober.
That being said, here are a few of our favourite things to do to make Dry January just a little bit easier.
1 – Make plans
One of the best (and arguably worst) things about January is that most people don’t want to go out spending loads of money as they’ve just blown the budget on Christmas and New Year. This can work to your advantage because those people also won’t want to go spending money in the pub.
Our first tip is to make plans that don’t involve drinks.
- Meet a friend for breakfast instead of dinner
- Go for a long walk in the countryside
- Visit a new town or village you’ve not been to before
- Try out that new coffee shop that opened up round the corner
Remember all that fun you used to have as a kid, no alcohol was involved then. Just because you are an adult in body, doesn’t mean you have to be an adult in spirit, be like a kid and do things that make you happy!
2 – Start something new
With all that extra time you are going to have on the weekends because you aren’t suffering with the hangover from hell and all the extra money you will have from not buying that extra bottle of wine on the way home, you can use it to start a new hobby.
Have a book lying on your shelf that you’ve wanted to read for ages but never got around to? Pick it up and get stuck in.
Love the idea of learning to cook? Channel your inner Nigella and get in the kitchen. Your waistline might not be grateful, but your soul certainly will be.
Or are you the sporty type, how about taking up a new sport. Love cardio, try weightlifting for something completely different, a big grass hockey fan, how about lacrosse for an even more brutal game with sticks. Do you just want to instil in your kids that they should give every activity (within reason…) a try, so, do a new sport with them and get the whole family involved.
3 – Change the narrative
I don’t know about you, but whenever we had a dinner party, we always used to get the cocktails and drinks ready for people when they arrived. There was wine on the table, sherry to cleanse the palate, port to toast, all the bells and whistles.
Now when we have a dinner party, we get all the alcohol free cocktails and drinks ready, there’s alcohol free wine on the table and until we can find good AF versions of sherry and port they will be off the menu.
Just because you aren’t drinking doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the things you used to do when you did.
As you’ve been honing your cooking skills by starting something new, why not invite your besties round for a dinner party. No one is allowed to bring the customary bottle of wine unless it is alcohol free. Your friends will appreciate the opportunity to critique your new abilities as a cordon bleu chef, the chance to try some delicious alcohol free drinks and they can go home feeling full in body and soul. You might end up convincing them to give up the drink for a while!
When you get close to the end of Dry January you might find some of your friends trying to guide you back to the path leading to the pub…that’s ok, but don’t be afraid to say “nah, I’m going this way”. You are the only one that can make up your mind about drinking. If they are truly good friends, they will respect your wishes and help you, if not, then you can decide if they are your tribe.
You’ve done 31 days booze free and lived to tell the tale, how about another 31 days.