Good Decisions. Consistently.

Stopping drinking does not make life all better. The same old shit will still bug you, and your personality will remain pretty much intact (albeit you’ll probably become less down on yourself and more optimistic about things in general). The curveballs will continue to get thrown your way, and the opportunities that seem so close and within reach will still, on occasion, slip away from your grasp leaving you feeling cheated. Some people will still annoy you; things will still, sometimes, not go the way you want them to.

All of this is true. And yet, I found myself thinking a few days ago, ‘everything goes how I want it to nowadays; my life has become so simple to navigate’. So I started to ponder this a bit, why I had arrived at the conclusion that life is easy now that I’m a non-drinker. And here’s what I came up with.

When I drank, I made a lot of ill thought out decisions. These often did not end with the one initial bad decision but seemed to flow, catastrophically, into a maelstrom of dark consequences. Which, in turn, affected a whole host of other areas of my life, with similarly terrible results. It was the lack of consistency and complete inability to sit back and ruminate on anything that got me into so much bother. (And being drunk a lot.)

Think it? Do it. Feel it? Act on it. Say it. Do it. Think it? Go on and DO IT.

But now, I am calm. I am consistently calm. I’m a thinker. I contemplate. I empathise. I sit quietly with my thoughts before I act upon them.

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This brings positive outcomes because my life is no longer a kamikaze frenzy of drunken behaviour. It’s well thought out. And a word that I keep returning to – it’s consistent. I often say that the thing I love the most about being a non-drinker is the clarity it brings, but I’m also extremely happy about another great benefit of this lifestyle, and that’s the level, steady consistency; the predictability, the lack of surprises. The reliability.

This is a good way to live. You get to plan and live a life that is less Russian Roulette and more Chess. You can think about your next move, and make it when you’ve weighed everything up. Partners are chosen because they’re who you really need and want; friends are made because you have solid things in common instead of merely a love of getting pissed; you can concentrate and apply yourself at work, meaning you give your best and excel. You just make better choices – all the time. Good decisions, consistently.

It’s good, this non-drinking life.

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15 thoughts on “Good Decisions. Consistently.

  1. Really enjoyed this post and I totally agree with all your comments. When I was drinking and using cocaine 22 hours a day I made decisions like spending the mortgage money on a Dior bikini and 3 pairs of matching sunglasses. I really thought the bikini was more important than the mortgage. I did have a shopping addiction as well. The result was that my beloved house, which I’d lovingly built from scratch, partly with my own hands, was almost repossessed. This house has provided my financial security for my entire life so this was a big deal. Now I’m 11 years clean I make carefully considered decisions, after discussion with people I trust. Of course I still make mistakes sometimes but not mistakes with the catastrophic consequences of when I was using http://bit.ly/1ER5cLY

  2. I love being sober, but now I have to deal with the fact that my husband and I really don’t get along. It was easy to overlook that in the past when I had my nightly glasses of wine. Now the problems are glaring.

    • smileforme says:

      I can definitely relate to that….but I take the chance because why should I have to medicate myself to deal with him….if it’s meant to be we can figure out what needs to change to make it work!!!

  3. clairesuper says:

    Yes yes yes! Sobriety has shown me that to slow down is no bad thing. Sometimes I think I became slightly addicted to the chaos that I caused so getting used to the consistency has to happen also. At 400 plus days I am very grateful to have a calm and stable home life.

  4. J.N. Atkinson says:

    It’s refreshing to see someone sharing their struggle with the world. I’ve never been an alcoholic myself, but I’ve known many. In fact, there are two people I’m connected with right now who I hope find the strength to sober up. I think we’re all tested, in one way or another, but if we can find our way out of the darkness we are rewarded with bountiful light.

  5. 2016newyear says:

    I loved your blog. I want what you have, I want this;

    This is a good way to live. You get to plan and live a life that is less Russian Roulette and more Chess. You can think about your next move, and make it when you’ve weighed everything up. Partners are chosen because they’re who you really need and want; friends are made because you have solid things in common instead of merely a love of getting pissed; you can concentrate and apply yourself at work, meaning you give your best and excel. You just make better choices – all the time. Good decisions, consistently.

    It’s good, this non-drinking life.

  6. Karen says:

    I really enjoyed your thoughts. I had never thought about drinking as ‘self medication’ in order to deal with a partner or life! Thank you for sharing.

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