2016 was a tough year for many people and now that the year is in the history books we can begin anew. Today our resolutions go into effect. And many of us resolve to improve our lives by adopting a more healthy lifestyle including diet changes and perhaps more exercise. I know I do.
Hopefully, you don’t have a ringing in your head this morning from too much alcohol last night. If you are hungover, drink lots of water and consider how you feel right now compared to a more optimal way of being.
As for us, we had a quite night at home with family watching the ball drop in Times Square. In years gone by I could have been one of the drunken revelers that flashed across the screen. But last night I was sober, forgoing any alcohol and I woke up clear headed and ready to go. At 12:05 AM, I was sipping kombucha, not champagne. For the first five minutes of the new year, I was kissing and hugging!
For the past two (2) years, I have not had a drop of booze. This after a couple of decades of having on average at least several drinks per week.
What started out as a 100-day gong of giving up alcohol has become a way of life for me now. If you would like to learn more about gongs, please see Pedram Shojai’s Urban Monk for more information.
I am not preaching about the evils of alcoholic beverages and I do understand the social aspects of drinking. Truth be told, I enjoyed the taste of beer and loved sharing great food and wine with friends and family.
Beeing a teetotaller is a great way for me to practice detaching. One thing that helped me was that I found out I was allergic to wheat so I could not enjoy beer like I used to. Drinking beer was like a poison to my body. Once my favorite alcoholic beverage was eliminated from my menu, it made giving up the other types of booze that much easier.
Staying on the wagon of sobriety offers many benefits, including:
- Better Sleep: Processing alcohol disrupts your sleep which is why you should not drink before going to bed. After giving up booze I don’t need to snooze in the morning. I wake up energized and ready to go, not bleary-eyed and slow.I found that the amount of sleep I needed to feel refreshed went down as well. Better quality sleep in less time!
- Fewer calories: Each beer I would have was on average about 2oo calories, and I would typically have two. Add to that the “beer munchies” that would often follow, and I often found myself consuming an extra 1000+ calories a day.
- Better Workouts In The Morning: It is hard to work out when you are hungover. As we previously stated alcohol negatively impacts your sleep. Waking up well rested allows you better performance in the morning.
- More Money: Drinking is expensive. If you order drinks at a restaurant or bar, you can spend between $6-$15 per drink. Of course, this can get much higher once you start ordering fine wines. If you get a DUI as a result of drinking, this could cost you at least $10,000 or worse.
- Less Regret: Alchohol lowers inhibitions, and many people have done things under the influence of alcohol they would never do sober. Keeping drinks from under your belt allows you to keep your wits better about you. Now that I don’t drink I can clearly see the inebriating effects of alcohol on others, and as a consequence, I am more resolved to maintain my composure and equanimity.
Ben Greenfield has an awesome site with a ton of helpful information on your body. He has a 2-part post that details the before and after effects of abstaining from alcohol for just 30-days. Please click here for Part 1 and Part 2.
We have the opportunity to live each day optimally. If you have not tried it already, I would encourage you to abstain from alcohol for 30-days and see how you feel. Please let me know how it goes. I’d love to get together with you for a cup of coffee.
Meanwhile For more resources and recommendations on how to get more out of your life, please check out my ebook – Cleaning the Connection