Monday, 7 May 2012
Why Don't More Heavy Drinkers Moderate?
Who’s this for;
Heavy drinkers who want to cut down on their drinking but so far haven’t found a way.
Moderation would be easier if we did the right things.
If you want to moderate, do what moderate drinkers do. They drink in a way that’s different to heavy drinkers. Learn some of the skills that moderate drinkers have and your drinking will become more moderate.
Unfortunately, this is not what a lot of heavy drinkers do.
Why don’t more heavy drinkers moderate?
You wake up with a steaming hangover and end up doing nothing the whole day. You feel like shit, not only because you’re hung-over but also because you’ve wasted another Sunday. You really want to cut down. So you stop drinking for a week.
End result. You feel much better but when you start drinking again you’re drinking like you always have. And then you forget about moderation until the next time you drink way too much.
Drinkers who want to moderate confuse ‘abstinence’ with ‘moderation’. Abstinence and moderation are two different things. They are two different skills. Abstinence is not drinking. Moderation is drinking small amounts which are not harmful to the body.
If your goal is to moderate your drinking then abstinence at best can provide you with some breathing space. It’ll detoxify your body and you’ll feel healthier. But abstinence by itself is unlikely tomoderate how you drink.
You moderate by learning the skills that moderate drinkers have. These are the skills that will help you cut down. They work because they give you a new way of drinking.
What are these skills?
· Learn to stop after one drink. (I recommend one at first because it’s simple and the effects of the alcohol are light).
· Drink water or a soft drink with alcohol.
· Learn to say to no to alcohol.
· Understand why you want to drink – then question this. Most of the reasons we used for drinking are based on myths or misunderstandings about alcohol.
· Increase the gap between your first drink and your second drink. Perhaps use a timer or alternate on the drinks i.e. soft drink than alcoholic drink etc.
· Increase the gaps between every drink you have.
· Think long and hard about the pain and trouble alcohol has brought you. You already know that too much alcohol is bad for you. Use this knowledge.
· If you go out, start off with a soft drink.
· Opt out of the round system.
There are probably more as well but if you learn two or three of the above, I’ll guarantee that the way you drink will change and you’ll be drinking less on more occasions.
So if you want to moderate your drinking, think like a moderate drinker, do like a moderate drinker and the end result, you'll drink more like a moderate drinker.