Friday, 1 September 2017

5 Reasons Why September is a Great Month to Quit Drinking

There is never a perfect time to quit drinking.

I spent months, years even, telling myself that right now was not a good timing as I had a big party, a holiday or a stressful work commitment fast approaching.

Often I'd get to around Day 5 and then the wine witch would say It's x's birthday next week. This is SO not the right time to stop drinking. Why not start again (moderately, of course), then you can stop properly after the party?

But the truth is there's always a good excuse to hand, a reason to quit quitting.

We're so used to relying on booze to deal with every emotion - celebration, commiseration, anxiety, stress, relaxation, grief - that any week of the year is bound to contain a perfect occasion for a piss up. 

Before you know it, another year has gone by in a haze of hangovers and half remembered events.

But NO MORE, because if there ever was an ideal time to quit, it's September. Here's why:

1. It's a New School Year

Yes, I know we're not at school any longer (unless you're a teacher), but all those years of getting new school uniforms ready and pencils sharpened for September are buried deep in our psyches.

September, like January, is a time of fresh starts and clean sheets of paper, but without all the cold, darkness and post Christmas misery.

2. You've Spent the Summer Bingeing

Go on, confess. Summer holidays are the perfect excuse for drinking at lunch time, mainlining cocktails by the pool and staying up until sunrise drinking dodgy local spirits.

By September the world and his wife have a terrible hangover, puffy faces and muffin tops, and the idea of booze has, just slightly, lost its lustre.

3. You Have a Perfect Excuse

It's really hard telling people you've quit drinking. When I got breast cancer I told everyone. I told strangers in shops, my hairdresser, even a traffic warden (who let me off the ticket).

When I stopped drinking I told no-one the truth, I just made endless excuses (I'm driving, I'm on antibiotics, I'm raising money for charity).

And making excuses is okay. In fact, it's a good idea, because the last thing you want to do when you're already feeling wobbly is to fend off an inquisition.

And September is the perfect excuse because (see above) you just tell everyone that you overdid the booze on your summer holidays and are detoxing. Chances are, they'll be doing the same.

4. It's Over Three Months Until Christmas

The hardest part of quitting booze is the first hundred days. Once you're through those it gets much, much easier. That's when you start to see all the benefits and to realise that you never want to go back.

If you quit now, you'll have done those hundred days before the Christmas Party Season kicks off.

5. You Won't be Alone

Quitting in the summer can be very lonely. The sober blogging world goes quiet. It feels as if everyone is down the beach downing tequila.

But now there'll be lots of enthusiastic sober bunnies looking for friends. Several countries hold Sober September events, and here in the UK we're gearing up for Macmillan's Go Sober October.

It's a great time to find a tribe - online or in real life.

(If you want to encourage even more passengers to jump on the sober wagon then please share this post).


Presuming that you're now totally convinced, check out my page (click here) on Advice for Newbies, or to read my story from the beginning, click here.

If, however, you still need more persuasion, click here for Reasons to Quit Drinking.

Happy September to you all!

SM x


  1. Vive la Rentrée! September always feels like more of a new year than January to me. Kids back at school after a 2 month long laze, there's a wee nip in the air and a sense of excitement and nervousness as we make sure everyone's bikes are in working order and everything on the list is in the school bag. I can get round to losing the ice cream induced excess poundage.

    This is the perfect time of year for new starts. Plus, think about the slinky Christmas party dress!

    1. Exactly how I feel too! And not having to plan taxis, the god awful hangovers after all the party's, not worrying about driving the morning after, and just enjoying every sober second of this amazing time of year!!! Xxxxx

  2. I love this time of year and yes it feels like a good time to start a new routine or a new challenge!! I stopped drinking last November, the end of November so very near to Christmas time but I was so ready to stop, so sick of feeling hungover and hating myself I just did it. I was ready! My aim now is to lose my last 6lbs to get to my wedding weight, eating cake all summer holidays hasn't helped this but I am back on it today and can't wait for autumn and winter! My favourite seasons by far- cosy nights in, hot chocolate and Christmas countdown with my 2 girls, can't beat it! Happy sober September to you all xxxxxxxxxxxx

  3. Great timing SM - I needed to read this today! Historically I've always done September Dryathlon for Cancer Research and this year they're NOT DOING IT! It doesn't make much of a difference anyway to be honest - I always saw Dryathlon as a countdown until when I could drink again, which isn't really the point......

    I just want to NOT WANT TO DRINK. I've never made it to 100 days - does it really get easier then?! Argh. Have a nice day : ) (I can never comment with my blog name on blogspot - open to any ideas anyone may have to resolve that please!)

    1. There's nothing magical about 100 days, but it does get easier. I found six weeks to be a significant milestone. In those early days you are fighting a habit without seeing any real benefits. After a few weeks you may notice your weight dropping and other things which help to keep you going, but before that you are going by willpower and sometimes wondering why you are doing this. You just have to 'play the tape to the end' to remember there's a great reason why you're not drinking.

      I just celebrated six months sober on 1 September. It feels good!

  4. So much good logic here! September is the perfect time to stop drinking, and I think it's the only month I didn't try. I made excuses for years, and I could rationalize instantly why I should be drinking that exact minute. It became an art form. Thanks for the inspiration. đŸ’•

  5. Well, that's good to hear since I've quit yesterday. I tried a 1000 times before but never got passed 7 weeks sober. And now I am using Campral, that you've wrote about a few weeks ago. Not very common in Holland to use it, but my GP gave it to me anyway. But besides the Campral I've also did some other things differently this time. I've told my 5 best friends that I am quitting the booze for at least a year (forever is something that sends my brain into a panic and I am pretty sure that if I make it to a year I won't want to start again, just like has happend when I quit smoking). My friends responded wonderfully, so that helps. I've also enrolled into yoga classes, which I wanted to do for ages but never did. I have my first class tomorrow at 10 am. Have a wonderful day everyone (nice and sunny here in Holland) and thanks for the post Sobermummy. Feels like a confirmation that I've made the right choice.

  6. Day 2 ... Year 2 here!!!!!
    I had not realised that I was choosing an optimum month to quit SM, but quit I have and you are correct .. Christmas was so much easier celebrating nearly 100 days, Dry January a doddle, encouraging others .... Great post SM, and let's hope it helps others along the way to bigger and better fun times ... Without hangover, with great memories. Happy September all X

  7. Excellent post, as always! It fit perfectly to how I'm feeling now, and I took your advice and listed your blog on my post entry today. Not that many will read it on my blog, but as a reminder to myself why this month is so special. Thanks!

  8. My first ever comment - something to celebrate! You are right about September and the whiff of something new and exciting in the air, good time for new ventures. For me Christmas will be exactly six months sober, so double celebration I hope. Thanks for your wonderful blog, which has been such an inspiration and help to me.

  9. 1st day sober today, hopefully forever! This blog has helped me so much, in deciding to take the plunge and quit altogether. I'm feeling quietly confident but it's only day 1 so of course i will feel like that haha.