Last week many of you clicked on the link to Lauren Krietsch’s article on What Happened When I Quit Drinking and we often note that in addition to her points:
Real friends stay, drinking buddies don’t (no loss that);
- You have more money;
- You lose weight:
- You remember;
- You don’t wake up feeling like, or wishing for, death (or as I phrased it, I didn’t mind the Arabs camping in my mouth overnight but I wished they’d left their camels outside).
Additionally there are a number of additional benefits as we age.
The biggest one may be that we are able to pay attention. Nothing adds to the decline of our physical, emotional, psychological, and general health as failing to pay increased attention to ourselves, our bodies, our activities, and our interests. At just when, with each passing year, we need to ramp up paying attention to all of these – and that need starts around 50 – most of us lull ourselves with another bottle instead.
Talk about a double whammy!
That’s right – we stop paying attention just as the need becomes greater, and we compound the downward spiral by sabotaging ourselves mentally, physically, emotionally, and socially by abusing alcohol.
As usual, the messages in here for all of us are pretty much the same:
- We abuse(d) alcohol because it worked, not because we dumb, diseased, weak, or immoral, but it isn’t working for us anymore;
- Alcohol became our coping mechanism for anything we were afraid to address, whether the realities of loneliness, boredom, aging, isolation, anxiety, etc., but now it’s time to address the causes – do so and the symptom will take care of itself;
- It’s time to proactively manage our lives and relationships – passivity is going to kill us;
- Life is a lot better, a lot more fun, and a lot more interesting, when we make ourselves available, we are engaged, and we are living in ways congruent with our beliefs, values, and abilities.
Isn’t it time for you to live an enhanced life instead of one diminished and demeaned by alcohol or “cults”?