Tip to stop drinking

Challenge the passing thought that you’d like a drink. Tell it to F*** off. Otherwise a seed will be planted that will grow into a real drink instead of an imagined one. Maybe not today, maybe a week later, but you will find yourself in a bar putting a drink to your lips.

Play the video the whole way through. This means: don’t just imagine what the first slurp will be like. Don’t just imagine the scene setter – sitting in a bar with a pretty girl sipping Champagne.
How many drinks will you have? What crap will you get into? How much harm will you do to yourself and those around you? What dark spot will you end up in? How many short months of misery before you end up dead in a gutter?

Concentrate on quitting drinking above all else. Don’t try to give up anything else initially. Don’t worry about smoking and/or overeating. These issues can be addressed later. No alcoholic punched someone close to them under the influence of a cigarette or a biscuit.

Don’t rush the program. It’s not a race. The concentration required to abstain and get through the withdrawals, without a relapse, precludes starting on the self-improvement steps until later.

Avoid stressful events in the first two years, if possible, such as divorce, moving house, changing jobs, or a new partner. The stress involved can break one’s concentration on tackling the withdrawals

If you absolutely have to attend an occasion, perhaps a funeral or work-related, where there is drinking and/or you know you will feel uncomfortable, don’t stay any longer than you have to. Always plan your own escape route in case. Make sure you have the phone number of a taxi or a friend if needed. In a pub situation, my first sponsor advised me always to buy the first round and slip away as soon as I liked. Usually no one remembers when we left, just that we bought a round, and if anyone makes a fuss about our not drinking alcohol it is a sign that they could have our disease, too.

The question of how to fill the time you used to spend drinking will arise. The cinema, evening classes, the gym and swimming are just a few examples. You could make your own list of things you’d intended to do. Also, you could sample many activities to see which ones spark an interest. If you are shy, amateur dramatics is a possibility, for example.