In recent years there has been a notable rise of the Soberista, and I’m not just talking about Soberistas.com. Numerous celebrities have opened up about their decision to become non-drinkers and various media worldwide have picked up on the early indications of a wider sea change in people’s attitudes towards alcohol and whether or not they wish to consume it in the same destructive way, something that has become the norm in many parts of the world.
We are used to reading about celebrities who pop into an exclusive rehab for a few weeks after one too many shots of them being completely out of it have appeared in the tabloids, their car crash lifestyle spilled out for all to see and the subsequent visit to some remote clinic or other becoming common knowledge. But in the last few years there have also been stories in the press about people such as Zoe Ball, Norman Cook and Daniel Radcliffe who have chosen the teetotal lifestyle but who arrived at that decision with much less of a public display of alcoholic debauchery.
The younger generations (in the UK at least) are drinking less, and the idea of being seen to be openly drunk has lost its appeal for many. Are we beginning to see a shift in attitudes towards alcohol abuse, in a similar way to that which has occurred with regards to smoking?
I believe that for this shift to gather real momentum people need to concentrate on all the benefits of being alcohol-free; this lifestyle choice should never be perceived as ‘giving up alcohol,’ for in using that phrase we imply the denial to ourselves of something pleasant and the focus is fully on what we have lost rather than what we have to gain.
There is only one way to successfully conquer your booze demons, and that is to gear your thinking towards the huge amount of benefits to be reaped by living an AF life, and to not give a further second’s thought to the notion that alcohol adds anything to your life. If more people take the bold decision to turn their backs on booze thus becoming ambassadors of AF living, then the commonly held perception of binge drinking being entirely normal and teetotalism being regarded as something only undertaken by oddballs or religious zealots will be increasingly challenged.
If society did not celebrate and normalise alcohol in the way it does currently, I wholeheartedly believe that I personally would have questioned by wine-guzzling habit many years previously to when I actually got round to thinking that perhaps all was not well in my body or mind as a direct result of all the alcohol I was imbibing on a regular basis.
Being proud of your AF status is an effective way to contribute to a change which I think has already begun (here’s hoping; now raise your glass of elderflower cordial in a collective toast to being a Soberista!).