Climbing Over The Mountains

I was thinking recently about the shift in thinking that occurs when we stop wanting to drink, when we become completely satisfied with the idea of being alcohol-free on a permanent basis. When I quit drinking, I didn’t expect to turn into a happy Soberista. I imagined a life of teeth-gritting boredom, tedium as I observed the world around me downing alcoholic drinks with gusto, and the endless pursuit of attempting to fill the hole that booze had left behind.

I hid away from the world for a very long time when I put down the bottle. On the odd occasion when I did venture out socially, I felt like a freak, convinced everyone knew about my ‘little problem’. I didn’t conceive of this feeling ever disappearing, but instead resigned myself to growing accustomed to it and tolerating an existence defined by my teetotal stance.

As it turns out, my life has become somewhat characterised by my decision to not drink. But not for the reasons I thought it would: cravings, stigma, embarrassment and shame arising out of my ‘issue’ with alcohol. No, my life has become defined by sobriety because stopping drinking has been the most monumental decision I have ever taken – and the person I’ve become as a result of not drinking is the one that I should always have been. I feel like I’ve returned to my roots since quitting the booze.

shutterstock_264167315

What began as a painfully awkward, steep learning curve of living free from the shackles of alcohol dependency has blossomed into a profound love of life that is a million times better, because drinking no longer features in it. From April 2011 onwards, every ‘first’ was a giant hurdle that needed clambering over – sober. Christmas, birthdays, stressful days, boring days, lonely days, busy days, disappointments, nights out; each one loomed like a dark and treacherous mountain, but conquering those events brought satisfaction and confidence and contentment. And a healthy does of self-belief too, which only furthered my ability to manage the next challenge that lay ahead.

camping woman

As time has gone on, I have forgotten what it felt like to want to escape my reality. I have lost the sensation of ‘needing’ a drink. I look at other people drinking and have absolutely no desire to join them in altering their minds. I am very happy to not drink.

If you are just starting out as a Soberista and currently every day without a drink, every minute of intense cravings for alcohol, feels like a mountain to be climbed, don’t despair. It passes. Honestly, it does. The only things that you need to embrace for the transformation to occur are a commitment to not having that first drink and patience.

Eat And Be Merry!

There’s plenty of evidence which suggests that what we eat has a significant impact on our mental health, so if you’re seeking ways to improve your state of mind as part of the battle against the booze, you could start by taking a look inside your fridge and kitchen cupboards.

The vast quantity of studies which have already been conducted in this area indicate that food is highly influential in the development, management and prevention of a wide range of mental health issues, from depression to Alzheimer’s disease. The evidence is building all the time, and suggests that by making changes to what we eat we can really help ourselves stay on track mentally.

juicing-wheatgrass

Over the next week and as part of our Four Weeks of Well Being, we will be posting lots of articles about ‘Mood Food’ on Soberistas (Facebook, Twitter and WordPress) which will provide you with plenty of information about how you can manage your mental health more effectively simply by following a particular dietary path.

For a comprehensive list of ingredients for improving mental health, see the link below. Bon appetit!

 

http://themindsanctuary.com/good-mood-food-%E2%80%93-ingredients-to-improve-your-mental-health/