This is the age old question that every alcoholic asks, and there is no one right answer to this tough question. If you are an alcoholic, one thing is for sure, you can no longer continue using the substance like you used too. It worked for a time, and helped settle your nerves so you could face the day, but there comes a time in every alcoholic’s life when they must face themselves. Luckily you do not have to do it alone, as no should be forced to face their demons without full support at their side. As scary as it may seem to go on living without alcohol in your life, it is the move that you must make. Life can actually be fun and enjoyable without drinking, even though you do not believe it right now.
Alcohol has been used for ages, and as long as there has been alcohol, there have been alcoholics. Whether someone is born an alcoholic or becomes one due to circumstances, one thing is for certain, and that is some people are more prone to it than others. An addictive personality will look for anything to change the state they are in, whether it be drugs, alcohol, tobacco, food, or any other means they can.
All alcoholics suffer from a malady and the nature of this predicament is spiritual in nature. For too long, an alcoholic has relied on their own will power to handle life, and while it may have worked well for a while, it will run its course and the alcoholic needs to find a connection to something greater and more powerful than themselves. This may seem scary, and you may be angry about this, but it is something that every alcoholic must face. The halls of history are filled with famous alcoholics who could not manage to kick their alcohol addiction (Ernest Hemingway, Amy Winehouse, Townes Van Zandt, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, and the list could go on), so it is something to take very seriously. As serious as the disease of alcoholism is, recovery is pretty light and can be a lot of fun when you get around a bunch of retired drunks. Life is always interesting in recovery and if you attend any support groups you will learn this first hand.
Nothing Can Come Before Recovery
Now onto the real reason you are here, and I wish I could tell you that it is possible to cut corners in recovery and still maintain sobriety. Nothing can come before your recovery, because whatever you put in front of your recovery, you will end up losing anyways. You must go after recovery and sobriety like it was your only hope, and for many alcoholics who have hit rock bottom, it is the only thing they have going.
Surround Yourself with Good Influences
Unfortunately, you must change the people that you hand out with, but it might not be as bad as you think. Most of the people you were hanging around during your drinking days were obviously not good friends if they let you end up the way that you did, and if you are reading this, then you know what I mean. A good friend is someone that will be there for you in good times and bad times, and most of the people you were partying with probably fled as soon as they heard that you were going through tough times. This is the nature of fair weather friends, so while it may sting at first to realize that the people you were running with were not true friends, it will be better for you in the long run. Most likely they don’t want to be reminded of how bad their drinking problem is, so they will distance themselves from you as quickly as possible.
A good friend is also someone who will call you out when you are making bad decisions. A true friend will be there for you and is not afraid to say what they think and feel about you. Honesty is the foundation of a good relationship, and it might be new to you, but it is how you build friendships that last through the tough times.
Change Your Behavior
Obviously you need to change your behavior and remove the alcohol from your life, but you also need to incorporate some healthy behaviors into your life. Some of these can include healthy eating, increased physical activity, and helping others. These are not all inclusive, but can really make a difference in your life. If you really want to learn how to stop drinking, then you must substitute in activities right after you quit drinking. Most alcoholics based their entire lives around drinking, whether it was time spent drinking or planning the next drink, so you want to have some healthy options there to turn to. You will have a lot of free time on your hands and this is one of the worst things for someone in early sobriety, because the ruminations are there and the quick fix is to turn back to the bottle, but that is no longer an option because it is leading you to an early grave.
Face Yourself and Your Past
Using alcohol to avoid life is a form of escapism, and only works for a finite time. You must face your life and what you have done in your past if you are to live a happy life in sobriety. As scary as it can be to face yourself in the mirror, it is something that you have to do in order to heal and recover from alcoholism. The good news is that you do not have to do it overnight. You did not become a full blown alcoholic overnight, but it most likely took years, if not decades to transpire. You will only be given what you can handle in recovery and this is where you need good support around you. Sometimes the support is there to nurture and pick you up, other times it is there to kick you in the butt when you are doing things that could hurt yourself. Good support is essential if you really want to stop drinking for good.
Learning How to Live without Alcohol in your Life
You will not be perfect at life when you first remove alcohol from your day to day existence. You will have to fall down and pick yourself backup. Life will seem incredibly strange and you might feel a little, make that very awkward. This is normal and you can make it through this period as you learn how to live again. Life in sobriety is fun, as long as you don’t take yourself too seriously. There have been many alcoholics who have learned how to live a life of sobriety, and actually found a way to enjoy it. You are not a lost cause as much as you think you are, and even the worst cases can recover from this dreadful illness. You have what it takes inside of yourself, if you are willing to go looking for it and not stop for anything.
Sometimes it takes more than the advice above to recover from alcohol addiction. Checking yourself into an alcohol rehab is a brave thing to do and is sometimes the best shot at a full recovery. If you feel that is the case with you, please give us a call at 1-888-929-4686 Best of luck on the road to recovery and sobriety. We look forward to seeing you live the life of your dreams, it is out there waiting for you.