How 12 months sober has completely elevated my life!
Living in Australia, our society has an extremely large social culture of drinking alcohol, partying and from my personal experience, there is a lot of peer pressure around drinking alcohol. Over the years, there have been countless events I have attended where I was peer pressured to drink from various friends because socializing without drinking means you are called ‘Odd’ or ‘boring’. This is no one else’s fault but my own, as I allowed that peer pressure to influence me. However, my mindset is now so strong, I can’t be influenced by outside noise. I can now recognize the couple of hours of fun isn’t worth feeling average for the coming days.
I loved to socialize and have a couple of the silly sauces, don’t get me wrong, however the next day I was always hungover and regretted drinking alcohol because of the way I felt. It would take me 3-4 days until I would feel myself again – motivated, focused and energized.
Progressively over time, I began drinking less and would say I was only drinking heavily once a month. In September 2020 I decided that I was going to do Sober October just to have a break and see how I felt after a month. Within one month I noticed how much more focused I had become and in my typical all or nothing fashion, decided I was going to do 100 days sober. To achieve the 100 days sober, this meant not drinking throughout Christmas and New Year’s Eve and I can honestly say I wasn’t tempted to drink at all. Once I hit the 100 days, I of course shifted the goal posts on myself and decided that I was going to aim for 12 months sober and raise a little money for the cancer council. Sneaky plug – here is the link to donate to the cancer council if you wish, it’s a great cause! https://gofund.me/e558312d
There was a short period of time at about the 9-month mark where I was tempted to have a drink and was really considering drinking however, the more I thought about it, the more I realized I would much prefer not to. I couldn’t justify drinking and sabotaging the way that I feel now. The focus, the motivation, the clarity, and the energy. This is when I realized that I value these things more then a little fun on the weekend that resulted in me feeling very average for the proceeding couple of days.
My mindset over the last 12 months has elevated to a level that I didn’t think was possible. Not spending between 1-4 days recovering from the weekend allows you to be dialed in and so focused. I now have such a high mental clarity. I find myself being less influenced by the outside world and focus far more on what I can control.
Throughout the last 12 months due to being so focused I have been able to put even more energy towards my goals. The first 6 months of being sober I worked two jobs 7 days a week, this would not have been possible whatsoever without being sober. This energy has allowed me to catapult financially and has created the opportunity of starting my own business and securing property this year as well.
Daily Habits and Routine
I have found that I now have a far better sleeping pattern and daily routine. Drinking alcohol prevents you from getting the deep sleep you require as well as puts you out of your regular sleeping pattern. I find my sleeping pattern is far more consistent, going to bed at a similar time and waking up early between 5am and 5:30am. This includes the weekend as well! 10pm is super late for this old man these days!
I have now adopted the habit of watching the sunrise at the beach every Sunday morning. This is something I do by myself; it acts as a form of mediation for me and is such an important part of my week. The combination of negative ions in the air, beauty of the sun peaking over the ocean on the horizon and the sound of the waves breaking on the sand is truly magically. I focus on my breath and listen to some music played softly so it doesn’t drown out the sound of the waves breaking. This allows me to slow down and reset and I always come away from that walk feeling refreshed. I look forward to creating more time and freedom to see more sunrises in the future.
My fitness level has also increased from not drinking. I found within the first couple of months I had lost a couple of kilos just from not consuming those empty calories and I really wasn’t even drinking that often. When I do any sort of cardio these days, I find naturally I have more stamina, and this has seen me breaking PB’s for my running in both distance and pace.
Consuming alcohol on a regular basis can leave you feeling unmotivated, lacking energy and your mind foggy and it’s not until you don’t have it for a consistent period you realize what a dramatic difference it makes. If you find you are struggling to get started with your goals, struggling to be focused, can’t lose weight, stuck in a rut or have no energy, maybe zero alcohol is something you need to give a go.