Turning a corner on the second weekend – 30 days without alcohol

I am doing the calendar month of November so we started on a Wednesday. I now have Friday, Saturday & Sunday in the bag. The second weekend. And I can contrast this against the first weekend only a few days in. When I pretty much felt like an addict. Which is either scary or silly – I am not really sure.

The Second Weekend

Weekends are the hardest. Not at work. At home. More spare time. Habitually when I would drink a bit more. Yada yada yada. Last weekend was very tough. This one… not so much.

Now, this is not to say that I did not want or crave a drink. But those cravings were not so strong. Also, they went away after a short period of time and I just kept busy.

I got more done around the house. I spent better time with the kids. Got back into some old hobbies, mainly playing video games.

I also did not work over the weekend. I actually relaxed. No checking emails. Nothing. My stress levels were lower. Did some work on the house but that is quite satisfying after spending my weeks attached to a computer.

I have also found I can read again. Really love reading. But have been having trouble concentrating and getting into a book. But… it seems that as my brain is calming down again. I am enjoying reading again.

I also seem to have had a cold for ages and that seems to have cleared up as well. Whether I was just under the weather or it was just a reaction to the booze – hard to say but again I feel

So, not all sunshine and rainbows. It’s not easy. There are times that I have a bit of a craving. But they are not so bad, they go quicker, and I am having more fun overall for not indulging them.

Weekend Review

I felt clearer headed and feel I had a better weekend without booze than I would have had with it. This is important. It’s all too easy to focus on what you are losing but really, the wins here are what I am gaining. And I enter this week a lot more positive about this change and with some big ideas for how I will be looking to change my drinking habits after this 30 days is done.


Day 10 – 30 Days without Alcohol

Okay. One-third of the way in. That’s progress. Granted, one slip up. But, back on the horse now. The weekend approaches, which of course is the real challenge but… determined to get to the end of the month and hoping it gets easier.

I would like to take this through December as well all the way to Christmas but to be honest, it’s pretty fucking tough at the moment. A couple of really tough weeks at work. I have not been sleeping great and that is one of the things that I usually notice when I stop drinking during the week.

But, I am not out the woods yet and everything I have read indicates the magic happens after about 90 days. Which seems like a long time to commit to at the moment. So, 30 days done a day at a time is the mantra at the moment. And then review at the end of November and see how I feel.

Habit Formation

There is this thinking that habits can be made or broken in three weeks. But from what I have read that only relates to enjoyable or easy things. So, in three weeks you can create a habit to go on Facebook first thing in the morning or have a few beers after work. But, when you have to break a habit that is a really well-worn groove over 20 years or so, three weeks will not cut it.

Hopefully, it gets easier after three weeks. And then hopefully, when I review at the end of November, I will be able to refer back to these posts, remember how I felt and think that I don’t want to go back there – I would rather move forward.

Responsibility debt

I read an interesting post by a health and fitness dude called Aadam on how it’s all too easy to make promises for our future self to live up to. You have to deal with things in the here and now and it’s best to not make huge promises you can’t live up to and then send yourself into a failure spiral.

You have no empathy for your future self, so it’s easy to heap things up without realising your future self is going to have all kinds of shit to deal with as well.

My wife put it well. She tends to do that. And I tend not to listen. But, a good way to look at this when making promises for your future self is “would I do that tonight? or tomorrow night?”. If the answer is no then you likely won’t want to do it then either.

Ultimately, you just have to deal with what you can in the moment. And that’s what I am going to do here. Get through this weekend and stop piling up this responsibility on my future self for now. Will review again on Monday hopefully after a 100% dry weekend!

Once more unto the breach!


Day 4 & 5 – the slip up – 30 days without alcohol

So. Day 4 we were having a little bonfire party. We had some friends over and they all came booze free which was really kind. Well, they had some booze in the car. So, I ended up having a few so they could have a few.

Not going to be too tough on myself here. Will just push on and add an extra week on and consider up to this point a bit of a warm-up.

I think the main takeaway here is… don’t just give up if you slip up. Just push on. Back on the horse and all that.


We then had a really nice family Sunday. I got up, took the kids swimming, we went to the cinema, popped and saw my family for a small fire and BBQ (and no beer for me) and then had a roast. I really did not miss the booze at all on Sunday. And we are just being more active for it.


I don’t want to avoid social activities entirely. But this was a bit early. And our historic bonfires have always been a bit of a big party. You just need to keep busy that first crucial weekend. So I will keep busy this weekend but hopefully, writing this on Tuesday (day 7), I am over the worst of it and can just keep busy and enjoy my green tea on the evenings!

Days 2 & 3 – 30 days without alcohol

Days 2 and 3 were tough. No doubt. This was a Thursday and Friday night. Prime drinking territory. Not going crazy. But I never do. But certainly, a few ciders or glasses of wine (or both) to unwind from the stresses of the week is usually in order.

And this was a really stressful week in the end. A client website got hacked. We don’t have anything to do with the website, hosting, maintenance or security. But it was our fault. It was something of an irrational witch hunt anyways but… So, I was kind of spun up on Friday night and really struggled without those few glasses of wine to win(e)d down.

I am guessing this is half psychological and half just some form of dependence. Mainly, in the way that I use alcohol to change gears from work mode to chill out at home mode. But, this strategy, whilst it works in the moment, often leaves me wide awake at 3am thinking about the issue, rather than processing it there and then.

So, I toughed it out. I felt a bit like an addict. Which is not cool. But it did make me think of a few interesting scenes from films which helped galvanise me to not give in. We just got busy, went to Ikea, ate out, got out of my normal Friday night environment. Not an ideal Friday, but a good way to help in this first weekend.

So, when you are struggling, just remember, you don’t want to be these guys. And it’s just booze. So get some perspective. So, tough it out and push on. 🙂

Renton from Trainspotting

Pookie from New Jack City


30 days without alcohol – day 1

I say day 1, but technically, this is the morning of day 2, where I can at least assess the impact of day 1.


I am a fairly average guy I would guess. 41 years old. Pushing 42. Not an alcoholic. At least I hope not. But I enjoy a drink on the evening to wind down. And running a small business, with the stresses of that I have likely come to rely on my post work drink a little too much to change gears from work to relaxation.

The problem is, whilst it helps in that moment, I am pretty sure it’s not helping overall. Disrupted sleep. Feeling tired all the time. Eating crappy food when drinking. Less likely to exercise the next day. Ultimately sleep, exercise and nutrition are the three pillars of health and drinking, even just a little bit has a negative impact on these.

The offshoot of this for me is being grumpy, anxious, and just not my usual happy, positive self. So, it’s time to make a change. I have threatened to do a month, three months or even a year of the drink before to reassess.

This time I am going for a month and will review my feelings then. I would like to take longer but I will review at the end of November and maybe push it through till Xmas.

Certainly, I would like to embed some change to my habits as holidays are when it is all too easy to drink every day, volume goes up a bit and these negative side effects accumulate. This has the knock-on effect that I can end up feeling worse at the end of a holiday than the beginning – and that’s not ideal.

So, here we go. One month for sure. Maybe the best part of two taking me to Xmas. And who knows what else beyond that. I am just going to record my naked thoughts here and see what happens.


My main goal is to stop drinking for a month and review how I feel about it at the end of the month. My general thinking is to push it too Xmas and then really moderate over the holiday. Potentially then do three months in the new year with a thought to potentially take that to 12 months.

Secondary goals are all over the place:

  • Clean up my diet
  • Lose some weight
  • Get in better shape (fitter, stronger, more endurance)
  • Write my marketing book
  • Write on this blog every day
  • Be a happier husband and parent

However, a friend clued me to some research that states that if you make 1 change you have an 85% chance of sticking to it. If you make 2 changes then your success rate drops to 35% and any further changes and you have pretty much no chance.

So… my goal is just to stop drinking. Then, if other positive things grow out of that then great. But I won’t give myself a hard time if they don’t.

Day 1 – thoughts

So, 1st November out the way. No booze. How do I feel?

  • Certainly feel sharper and more alert this morning
  • Definitely slept better
  • Got up early and exercised this morning
  • Felt more positive
  • Less anxiety regarding the day ahead

Early days, but I feel good this morning. Not tired. Not cranky. Not anxious. I won’t reach for the champagne just yet but… oh yeah, I won’t reach for the champagne at all, but it’s a positive start.

Let’s see how day 2 plays out.