How to Quit Drinking and Make it Stick
In 2020 there are so many different options to help you stop drinking long-term, but that isn't always a good thing. It's the day and age of information overload! So, what is a midlife gal who has been drinking since she was a teenager do? Which option should she choose?
First of all, take a deep breath in through your nose and exhale out through your mouth. I've got you!
Second of all, you are not alone in feeling overwhelmed, along with the back-and-forth indecision of quitting; it's too much! I speak with women over 40 every day, fighting with themselves on not only how to stop but also if they need to.
Let's end the fight together, shall we?
In episode 126 of the To 50 and Beyond podcast, I talk about how to quit drinking and make it stick because I know how hard it is to maintain long-term sobriety.
This photo was taken in 2009 right before my mom was going into surgery for Stage IV cancer. Like most of the photos I allowed anyone to take of me throughout my forties, I look forced to smile. I share this photo with you because it represents how I felt when I finally quit drinking in 2013, I felt lost and flat and miserable.
The reason I recorded this episode is to help women over 40 realize that the more time you spend trying to make alcohol "work", the less time you have to truly LIVE your life. I wish someone would have told me this back in 2009 - four years before I actually stopped drinking.
The three things I talk about in this episode, which are essential in getting sober are:
- Self-awareness. Being truthful to yourself before getting caught up in what you're going to tell everyone else.
- Finding support and letting it out! Holding in how you feel about your drinking and your desire to quit will only prolong you quitting. There is no shame in getting sober.
- Finding a solution that works for YOU, not your friend or someone you follow on social media. Getting sober is personal even though we share the same thoughts and feelings; my recovery is not the same as yours.
When I quit drinking on August 11, 2013, I chose not to go to AA because I was too embarrassed. I never pictured myself talking openly to anyone except my family and friends about my desire not to drink. And, even in those conversations, I wasn't wholly vulnerable.
AA was the only option I knew existed at the time - I wasn't educated on alcoholism and getting sober. It was never in my vision for myself, so why would I?
In this day and age, you have so many different avenues that you can take - inpatient rehab, outpatient rehab, therapy, counseling, coaching, group programs, AA, and more, but how do you know which one will work for you?
You have to take action and enroll in one option to learn if it works and if it doesn't, you change it up - immediately. There is a slippery slope when you force yourself into doing something because you want the outcome it promises, but you are not "feeling" the progress.
You have the right to change daily, but you can't get to the outcome of sobriety if you don't take that first step. Please know that you will figure it out as you go, that's key in getting to Day One.
If you are a woman over 40 and have been drinking since you were a teenager, it's time to give yourself the gift of letting go.
Listen to the episode here.
If you are tired of waiting and want to start living life to you fullest ability without alcohol holding you back, please join Elevate today!
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