Have you ever thought how easy and clean your life would be once you quit alcohol? You literally do not have to stick to a lifestyle that causes you constant trouble or discomfort.
From including more robust choices to examine your relationship with alcohol, reducing or avoiding your alcohol consumption can improve your life to every degree. Once you begin an alcohol-free lifestyle, it will positively impact your relationships, wealth, and career. In addition, it will help you with overall mental and physical health improvements. So, that’s why we decided to dig deeper into how to start an alcohol-free lifestyle and its benefits.
Health Risks of Alcohol
Short-term Health Risks
Excessive alcohol use has immediate consequences that heighten the risk of many adverse health conditions like:
- Motor vehicle accidents, falls, drownings, burns, and injuries.
- Destruction, including homicide, suicide, sexual assault, and intimate partner violence.
- Alcohol poisoning and medical emergencies result from high blood alcohol levels.
- Unsafe sexual behaviors, including unprotected sex or sex with multiple partners. These actions can result in an unplanned pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV.
- Miscarriage and stillbirth or fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) amongst pregnant women.
Long-term Health Risks
In addition, excessive alcohol consumption can lead to the advancement of chronic diseases and other grave problems, including:
- High blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, liver disease, and digestive issues.
- Growth of cancer of the breast, mouth, throat, esophagus, voice box, liver, rectum, and colon.
- It is incapacitating the immune system, raising the chances of getting ill.
- Learning and memory difficulties, including dementia and weak school performance.
- Mental health issues, including depression and anxiety.
- Social issues, including family problems, job-related problems, and unemployment.
- Alcohol control disorders, or alcohol dependency.
So, if you think it is high time to break up with your alcohol relationship, try these steps to kick-start your alcohol-free lifestyle.
#01 – Start slowly with determination.
Small things count in the first place. Always remember that one little thought could change your entire life, either for good or for bad. In fact, to start with the rest of the alcohol-free lifestyle tips on our list, first, you should have determination. Make sure to yourself that you really want to do this. In addition, come with positive affirmations that you will not give up halfway through. If you are a binge drinker, you don’t have to begin by giving up drinking completely.
Remember that you cannot change a habit that has been practicing for years overnight. Gradually, try moderate alcohol, and then you can proceed to call it a day ultimately. You are prepared to change. Therefore, know that you can improve just as others have and have a better alcohol-free lifestyle. Try to learn how others have gone alcohol-free and shape their behavior. In fact, always be kind to yourself through this mission.
#02 – Start working out or exercise a little more extra.
The biggest reason many people decide to have an alcohol-free lifestyle is to feel better physically. By not drinking, you’ll have extra time and unquestionably more effectiveness.
When someone makes working out a habit, they often start to take better care of themselves in other ways. They begin sleeping better, developing eating habits, and even paying more attention to their hair, clothes, makeup, etc. Moreover, exercise increases health, energy, strength, and self-esteem. If you are thinking of a way to start, we may advise you to start slow. In fact, you don’t have to hit the gym at once. Start with walking or working out simply at home. Starting is always the most valuable thing.
#03 – Keep on finding yourself sets of non-drinking friends. Make your tribe!
When you decide to breathe an alcohol-free lifestyle, you may spontaneously feel very isolated. Therefore, it is super necessary to find a non-drinking friend as soon as possible. But, the problem is, they might not always be the ones you actually want to hang out with. Just because they are alcohol-free may not be suitable to become good friends for life. So, in that case, here are a few ways to find the ones you like:
- Shift your alcohol-free lifestyle into conversations with people. You’ll find two kinds of people this way: people who are excited that you don’t drink and people who don’t drink. Indeed, the second kind is the type you’re looking for.
- Start hanging out in places that are expected to have more non-drinkers.
- If you’re brave enough, post on social media that you’re a non-drinker. And, question out loud who else is a non-drinker, too. In addition, Email or private message the people you’d prefer to hang out with and ask them to dinner or coffee or a ball game.
#04- Get an alternative beverage.
This sounds almost too uncomplicated but decide on an alternative beverage and stock your fridge with it. Then, rather than a beer or glass of wine, seize your new favorite beverage instead.
If you have no idea what your favorite new drink is, now is a great time to explore. You could try some new soft drinks or order a fancy flavored iced tea at the restaurant. Additionally, you could even add slices of various kinds of fruit into a glass of water.
Suppose you actually love the taste of mojitos, daiquiris, or almost any beverage with an umbrella. In that case, most skilled bartenders know how to create a non-alcoholic version that comes very close. However, the real solution, though, when you’re at a restaurant or bar is to identify what you’re going to order. In fact, when you go in, order it with determination and enjoy it.
#05 – Cook more – Discover the hidden chef in you.
Cooking is a great way to get yourself going once you decide on an alcohol-free lifestyle. Make cooking a fun event for yourself and try new recipes for the family. Furthermore, make a full week’s worth of meals and store them in the fridge. Discover an engaging new dish that takes 2 hours to prepare.
In fact, if you choose to start exercising, preparing healthy meals will also be an excellent counterpart to your new spirit of health and wellness. Cooking can be quite healing and a great kick-start to your alcohol-free lifestyle.
#06 – Practice a good way to say “No, thank you” with aplomb.
An alcohol-free lifestyle will compel you to say no to more than mere alcohol. You’ll also expect to find yourself saying no or despairingly wanting to say no to several social invitations. And, some people are delighted to join friends for a happy hour. But, on the other hand, many non-drinkers find these sorts of activities are not so delightful when you’re the only one not drinking.
However, things will be much easier if you practice saying no more confidently and politely in such situations. You could simply say: “Thanks for the invitation, but I have other plans.“
You don’t really have to elaborate on the reasons for saying no. In fact, this will make other people think that you are making it all up. What really matters is to take care of YOU. You may find yourself in a stuck situation if someone offers you a glass of wine, a beer, or any other drink in a social gathering. Therefore, in such cases, try to help yourself with a soft drink or a glass of water instead. Having a non-alcoholic drink in your hand is the best way to decline an alcoholic beverage politely.
#07 -Commit to doing something else during cocktail hour.
When you choose to do something else during cocktail hour, have a guilt-free method to say no with confidence. It also provides you a chance to do something else while your friends are socializing together. In fact, your commitment doesn’t have to be perpetual or contractual. You could simply go home and make dinner for your family. Or, you could assign to a volunteer organization or commit to a job a target. In addition, you could even start a side business. In fact, committing yourself to something healthy is a great way to spend your perfect alcohol-free lifestyle.
#08 – Get a good night’s sleep.
Once you decide on an alcohol-free lifestyle, you may hit home early when you don’t attend all those late-night drinking sessions. Most people are sleep-deprived, even without alcohol. In fact, you may feel bored at home by 9.00 pm when you don’t go out partying. Therefore, utilize that time for a good night’s sleep. If you have trouble sleeping, try meditation or slow, soft music that will help you fall asleep without much difficulty. In addition, have sleep-inducing food for dinner. Use this time to get that kind of sleep your body deprived of for years. Practice this daily, and eventually, you’ll find yourself having the most peaceful sleep you’ve ever had!
# 09- Realize, forgive, and accept yourself.
Practice this mantra for a better alcohol-free lifestyle. “Stop punishing yourself over past mistakes, you learn, and you move on. Let go of the past; everything is done. Focus on now and your better future. Accept that this is a lifestyle transformation for the better. And, if others do not like it, be ready to move on and put yourself first. In fact, it is not who you are; before you ever drank, you survived fine. Move back and restore that confident non-drinker. That is who you are. That role of your life is permanently over, and you have moved on to a more comfortable, healthier, happier and more confident you.”
#10- Reward your alcohol-free lifestyle.
Rewards can be very motivating depending on the difficulty of the non-alcoholic life you chose to have. Literally, when you don’t drink, you end up saving a lot of money. Collect the money you usually spend on alcohol into a jar. Finally, when the jar is full, get that money and spend it on something you longed to buy. That could be a PlayStation, a new musical instrument, an electric appliance, or whatever you deserve. Help yourself out on vacation or try new restaurants in the town alone or with family. Wouldn’t that be a new level of happiness?
Remember- Stick to your plans and stay within your limits. Always keep in mind that other peoples’ drinking or opinion is none of your business. Therefore, do not attempt to change them. Focus on your own efforts and your own life.
Health Benefits of an Alcohol-free Lifestyle
#01 – Advanced memory function
Alcohol can affect your brain function by damaging the communication between neurons, which can lead to short-term memory loss. Immoderate alcohol consumption, mainly for a long period of time, can begin to change your brain structure. Therefore, this can cause more critical long-term memory loss and affect your ability to learn new things. Hence an alcohol-free lifestyle can help keep your brain function healthy and your memory distinctive.
#02 – Promotes weight loss.
Most alcoholic drinks are high in calories, and many are also infused with juice or other liquids packed with sugar. Eventually, drinking alcohol can cause you to gain weight because your body operates the alcohol before other nutrients. The additional nutrients, such as sugar, are converted to fat and deposited in your body. In fact, alcohol can also invigorate your appetite, causing you to eat more than usual. Therefore, quitting alcohol can help you make finer food choices and avoid unwanted calories and sugars from your diet.
#03 – Increased heart health
Leading an alcohol-free lifestyle would help you to lower your blood pressure and heart rate. In addition, it may also lessen the risk of growing several other heart-related health problems. Moreover, too much alcohol consumption can raise your triglycerides, causing fat to gather in your arteries. This stiffening and hardening of your artery walls can cause grave health conditions like heart attacks, strokes, or arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat).
#04- Stabilized moods
Alcohol is a depressant and can cause changes in your mood and impact your mental health. Moreover, alcohol promotes serotonin levels in your bloodstream, causing you to encounter temporary feelings of happiness. However, your serotonin levels rapidly return to normal levels, which could result in feelings of depression. Hence, an alcohol-free lifestyle can help balance your serotonin levels and prevent tremendous shifts in your mood.
#05- Improved liver function
Your liver functions to filter toxins from your body. Gradually, alcohol can weaken your liver function and lead to health conditions like fatty liver disease or liver damage. Luckily, in many cases, your liver has the skill to repair itself. Therefore, it is vital to take precautions to keep your liver healthy before grave impairment is done.
#06 – Promotes deeper sleep
Generally, alcohol also influences the way your central nervous system works. Initially, it can reduce your breathing and lower your heart rate and blood pressure. Hence, this can leave you feeling exhausted and can cause you to fall asleep quickly. However, as your liver starts to metabolize the alcohol in your bloodstream, your heart rate, and blood pressure rise. This will prevent you from getting deep sleep. Without this disturbance to your central nervous system, your blood pressure and heart rate can persist stably as you rest.
#07- Improving your immune system.
Alcohol can have an instant, negative effect on your immune system, decreasing its ability to fight off germs. Therefore, over time, alcohol can also lessen your body’s ability to fix itself. Hence, an alcohol-free lifestyle will support your immune system to start to rebuild itself and strengthen, keeping you healthy.
Other Positive Impacts on Your Life with an Alcohol-free Lifestyle
#01 – Reacquiring financial freedom.
Depending on its austerity, an alcohol problem can immediately turn into a costly issue and drain your bank account. In fact, many people even take it to the edge of losing their home, job, and even family. When you experience an alcohol-free lifestyle, you will have the means to pay bills, obtain things or experiences you want, or build a substantial savings account.
#02 – A heightened connection with other people.
Alcohol dulls a person’s potential to feel. As time progresses, drinking can reduce your capacity to empathize with others around you. Emotions and empathy are essential when you want to endure a meaningful relationship with someone else. Hence, sobriety enables people to wake up and engage in lively and meaningful connections with those who matter to them.
#03 – Regaining self-confidence.
When you start an alcohol-free lifestyle, you will eventually begin to regain your long-lost self-confidence. And, ultimately, you can fantastically be proud of yourself for not letting yourself drain over a bottle of liquor!
Your life and your body are things that you should completely keep under control. Therefore, letting a toxin ruin your life and body is an absolute waste. By trying out the tips on our list above, you could kick-start your alcohol-free lifestyle right away and enjoy the benefits that come with them. So, good luck with a great life ahead!