Monday 18 January 2016

Reasons to Quit Drinking #9: You'll Get Stuff Done

They say that when you're a big drinker your world shrinks. One day you look up from the bottle and think "Is this it?"

(See my post: Let Me Not Die While I'm Still Alive).

Well, no. This isn't it. There's a whole world of possibility out there, and when you stop drinking it suddenly becomes apparent.

If you think about it, imagine you spend an hour a day achieving little because you're a tad hungover.

Then there's another two hours a day when you achieve little because you're a tad drunk.

That's three hours per day (on average), twenty one hours per week, two working days! Per week!

Imagine what you can do with an extra twenty one hours!

It often starts with the little things.

One of the common effects of quitting is your house suddenly gets really clean. Gleaming!

Partly because you have spare time, but also because cleaning is a great displacement activity. It stops you thinking about drinking and keeps your hands busy.

Another fabulous activity, for the same reason, and because it's good for the soul, is de-cluttering (see my post on Clutter).

But those things are just starter level sober stuff.

After you quit you find your energy levels start to increase (once you're past the 'I'm so tired I could get into bed and sleep forever' phase) and your neurons start firing in a way you've forgotten they could. You feel creative, imaginative and entrepreneurial.

People talk about taking up drawing, writing, knitting, running, yoga - all sorts of amazing stuff once the booze is out of the picture.

Then, once you start getting used to dealing with emotions and stuff sober, you wake up one day and realise that you've lost your sense of fear.

(See my post: Feel the Fear)

Not only are you achieving more, but you're able to go out and sell yourself. Launch a business, publish a book, find a new partner.

Then, you look back at where you've come from and you think OMG, my world is so much BIGGER than I ever thought it could be!

And all because you've made just one small change.....

Love SM x


  1. Start with box sets and catching up with all those programmes you wanted to see but fell asleep in front of every night!

    1. Ha ha yes, I have a box of dvd's that I've been eyeing up. Have slept through the end of all films for the last 5 years.

  2. Day 18 and while I am in the phase of being more tired than usual, I did do such a event on Saturday. My 26 year old daughter got up on Saturday morning, early 5:30 a.m., to go with me to breakfast at a famous diner in LA, then off to the Griffith Observatory to view the sights and see a show! Then off to a great Chinese lunch! I haven't done anything like this in years. And the beauty is my daughter is so proud of me giving up the drink. And to think, yesterday I was sad; but as you wrote, "Tomorrow is going to be great." You were right. It is.

  3. Yes I am really enjoying the clean sweep and sort out. Spent yesterday sorting out pictures from when the kids were small, putting them in albums that I had bought at the time. Bit ashamed as the "kids" are 18 and 20 and these were pictures from when they were infants. Happy happy times, made me really want to stay sober.

  4. You read my mind, SM, I sweat. This evening, for the first time in 6 months, I've assessed our finances, scary but very productive. Oh and my bathroom sparkles! All that spare time!!! Red xx

    1. I sweat?? I mean I swear!! Bloody autocorrecty thing.

    2. I thought the sweat was the result of doing all that housework!!

    3. Actually true, I was sweating whilst cleaning the bathroom - you need protective eyewear in there now, it's so darned clean!!

  5. Day 15 here. Very productive and busy long weekend, hangover free! I was able to help my child organize his materials for midterms, finish chores, shop, bake, and prep lunches for the week. Plus fun family time. Tonight at dinner, my husband poured me a glass of wine! I put it next to his wine glass and had an AF beer instead. He said, " oh, your not drinking at all in January?" I guess he thinks I can moderate. I toy with that idea, but for now, I am going to try sober.

  6. I just am finishing your much resonated with me...I'm not afraid to quit but it's been years...many years that it's been in my life...I'm now single, left a marriage of alcohol and why would a new man want a woman who drinks too much when she wants one that barely drinks...thank you for the book and encouragement