A few months ago my sister called me with some bad news. She said that she…
I’ve now been sober for 15 months and a lot of people have asked me for advice on how I managed to cut out drinking so I wanted to share a few things I have learnt on the path to teetotal town.
Honestly, how I got sober is incredibly personal to me but not in a way that I want to keep it to myself, personal in a way that it is unique to my journey. I got sober because I was at a complete rock bottom. There was no other option for me but to stop intoxicating myself and ruining my body. I really don’t wish that on anyone and I’m here to tell you that you don’t need to get to the bottom of a deep dark hollow pit or to be in a harrowing state to get sober; you can do it by deciding that you want to – that’s it.
Having gone through the journey to becoming sober I will be using my experience and knowledge about sobriety to offer you the best books, people to follow and advice from what I have learnt along the way. So to anyone wanting to embark on this journey without going far away down south, here’s what I suggest for those first few months:
Stay away from bars
You’ll probably need to avoid pubs, bars and clubs whilst you’re trying to avoid the temptation of drinking. I did and it helped me massively to really centre myself and stay focused on my goal. I am now able to go out and enjoy a non alcoholic bevvy (nonny is what I’ve started calling them) but I always tend to leave places before things get too messy and before people start getting ridiculously drunk to avoid any scenarios where I could potentially feel like downing a larger (yes, I used to drink larger).
Follow sober accounts online
There are so many online groups and people shouting loud and proud about the joy and benefits of sobriety. There really is a whole sober universe out there. When I got sober, I indulged in a lot of instagram doom-scrolling to distract me from wanting to go out drinking and what a good distraction it was. My favourite sobriety advocating instagram accounts are:
Books is my thing so I read a lot of self-help literature and it’s massively helped me. There is also a world of literature out there on sobriety called Quit Lit which some of I will recommend below but if you find that it is too difficult to concentrate on reading or it isn’t how you best learn, there are a lot of inspiring YouTube/TikTok videos. My favourite is Johann Hari’s TedTalk on addiction here. I really recommend learning about self-help / self love because it’s so important to have a strong foundation of love that’ll improve every area of your life not just your journey to sobriety (if that’s your aim).
If you are a bookworm like me then I recommend the following books (in this order):
- How to go Alcohol Free
- The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober
- The Sober Diaries
- Quit Like a Woman
- Sunshine Warm Sober
- The Sober Lush
Don’t beat yourself up
Easier said than done, I know, but the best thing to do is to try not beat yourself up (too much), especially if you slip up – just start fresh again the next day.
Invest in your health
Be that nutrition, exercise, getting therapy, or anything that is going to improve your wellbeing; whatever health looks like to you. Take the money you would usually spend on nights out and invest it into your health. Trust me.
Reach out for help
This is probably one of the hardest and most underrated things you can do. It’s all well and good doing the work on your own but without a community of supportive peers then you’re going to feel super lonely. I became so full of life and love when I got comfortable being sober but I was also really lonely. I didn’t have 1 sober friend for a whole year before I met my (now partner) first sober friend. I did have a lot of people online and created a book club (@sobergirlbookclub) where I met likeminded people who I now call my friends (we now have a whatsapp group and chat regularly). Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, I welcome messages on instagram or twitter (@emalemonpie) too – come and say hi! It’s so important to surround yourself with supportive people! ❤️❤️❤️