10 Steps to Get You Alcohol Free

10 Steps to Get You Alcohol Free

Here's how you do it. Ready?

1. Admit it!

Admit right now that you have a problem with alcohol. I mean really admit it. Speak it. Write it down. Draw a picture of it. Whatever it takes, just declare out loud that today is the day that you are quitting drinking and you are going to learn how to stop drinking. 

Tell the ones you love about your plan. Don't say you are going to try to stop drinking, tell them that you are quitting alcohol for good. Promise them, but more importantly, promise yourself. Now is the time to make your life better and make up for what has come before. Stop drinking. Do it now. That means to pour the alcohol out. Throw the alcohol away. It is time for the alcohol-free zone.

2. Question yourself

OK, now ask yourself a few questions.

  • Why did it get out of hand?
  • What triggered your desire for alcohol then and what drives it now?

By asking yourself these questions you can learn to understand what to watch out for when it comes to drinking. It may be difficult to avoid alcohol all the time. It is a good idea at the beginning of this process to try to do just that. Avoid the temptation. Keep alcohol out of your home. Don't go to a bar or an event where there is alcohol. 

If you have communicated your desire to stop drinking with those close to you, ask them to help you with this process. Chances are they have wanted you to stop drinking for a while and will help you avoid alcohol and understand when you need to. You need to make your home an alcohol-free zone and everywhere you go.

3. Learn from it

Even though you don't want to dwell on the past, it is a good idea to learn from it. Remember the bad times when you were drinking. It might be tempting to remember only the good times, but both you and I know there were far more bad times. Times you were sick. Times you passed out. Times you hurt your loved ones. Times you hurt yourself. Don't hate yourself for those times. Hate the alcohol that made those times possible. Hate it so much that you banish it from your life.

4. Discover your motives

Ask yourself why you are really quitting. I have gone over the effects alcohol has and can have on you and the ones you love. Some of those could be the reasons why you want to stop drinking. You may have a different one, one person to just you. The point is that it has to be your reason for quitting. It won't work any other way. Don't quit for your family or your friends. 

You will only resent them for depriving you of something that you want or have actually come to need. Yes, take into consideration what you are doing to them and use that to motivate your choice, but if you don't want to stop you won't. It has to be your choice. Is it? Then state your reason and focus on that. Say it to yourself when you get up in the morning and when you go to bed at night. Tell it to yourself when the urge to drink comes on. Tell the ones you are close to. Tell strangers. Write it down. Post it where you can see it. Just decide why you want to quit and then do it. Make the commitment to change.

5. Mean it

Watch what you say. What does that mean? It means to make positive statements when it comes to stopping drinking. None of that "I'm trying to stop drinking." That is not convincing anyone, not even yourself. You need to say "I am quitting drinking." That is a positive statement. That is a powerful statement. 

That sounds like you mean it. Influence yourself by declaring your positive actions. Shout it out to the rooftops that you are taking control of your life and you are living alcohol-free. Go ahead, brag about it even. Being alcohol-free is a big step and a difficult one. You deserve to be proud of what you are setting out to do.

6. Self-talk

Watch what you say in part two. Not everything you say it out loud. You have an internal voice. What are you telling yourself? Self-talk can be positive or it can sabotage what you are trying to accomplish. In the past, your self-talk has probably been negative. You have beaten yourself up over your drinking and the way you have acted while under the influence. 

Remember that you influence you. Remind yourself of what you are trying to accomplish. Constantly remind yourself that you are not letting alcohol ruin your life. Remember what your reason for giving up alcohol is. Believe in yourself and keep up the positive self-talk. Get the negative thoughts out of your head. Only let in the positive thoughts that tell you that you are not drinking. Tell yourself that you deserve an alcohol-free life full of possibilities and that you deserve a future.

7. Visualize the bad

Use your visual mind. You have already done this when you recalled the bad times that came when you were drinking. Try this exercise: Think of your favorite alcoholic beverage. Maybe it is a glass of wine, a mug of beer, or a shot of something stronger. Imagine the alcohol is filled with dirt, bacteria, or some other nasty substance. 

Picture it in your mind. Lock it in. The next time you feel the urge to drink, pull up this picture in your mind. Add this to the recollection of all the things alcohol cost you and all the bad times that came from drinking and this should help you combat the urge to drink when it arises. Add this to the positive self-talk you have developed and you can be strong enough not to drink.

8. Imagine your new future

Everyone has a fantasy of what they wish their life could be. You may dream about it. Just as you can use bad images to help fight the urge to drink, you can use positive images to help encourage your alcohol-free life. Did you know that you are truly lucky right now? By stopping drinking you are making a huge change in your life. You are creating a new you. Who wouldn't want to be a more improved version of themselves, right? What do you want to look like? Who do you want to be? Who is the best you? Take the time to picture the "you" that you have always longed to be. Now is the time to be the real you, the best you. Are you happy? Are you healthy? Are you in a relationship? Do you have the job you want? Are you proud of yourself? You can be what you want to be by saying goodbye to alcohol. Picture yourself alcohol-free and the "you" that you want to be is within your grasp.

9. Take stock

Take stock of your life hour by hour, day by day, week by week, and month by month. You get the picture. What was your routine when you drank? I am sure alcohol dominated most of your waking life. If you weren't drinking at the moment, you were probably thinking about your next drink. That is very time-consuming. 

What is left of that routine when you take the alcohol out? I'm sure a lot of unused time. What can you put in its place? Substitute the healthy for the bad. Fill it up with people who care about you and things you enjoy. Stay busy. Plan your life in the beginning. It will help you stay on track. Fill it with productive activity and no alcohol. Soon you will be able to handle unplanned time without feeling the urge to fill it with alcohol. Until then, stay busy and see all the things you now have time for that you didn't have time for before.

10. Get rid of the negative

Make sure you take all the negative things out of your life. This may be hard for some people. For others, it may feel like a welcome relief. This even means looking at the relationships you have. No more drinking buddies. No more negative people who do not believe in you. It is very difficult to stop drinking. It can be even harder without a good support system. 

If you are going to remove alcohol from your life you may have to remove people the same way you needed to remove situations. You are changing your life for the better. Don't apologize for that. Just keep making every part of your life positive - it is for the best. Bid farewell to everything and everyone that can influence you to choose alcohol again. Chances are you won't miss anything you walk away from. That includes alcohol.

10 Steps to Get You Alcohol Free