Published On: June 9, 20221230 words6.4 min read

What is Your Change Plan? 

Pin this document on your fridge and fill it in slowly but surely.

Changes I want to make:

  1. How important is it to me to make these changes (scale of 1 to 10)?
  2. How confident am I that I can make these changes (scale of 1 to 10)?
  3. The most important reasons I want to make these changes are:
  4. The steps I plan to take in changing are:
  5. How other people can help me:
  6. I will know my plan is working when:
  7. Some things that could interfere with my plan are:

Change

What is change? Do you like change? Do you fear change? What is causing you to feel this way?

Why should you change? Why should you not change?

Have you heard the latest buzz words: natural recovery? It seems that there is a movement starting, initiated by people who drink. They want to change, on their own, without help. More people are deciding to take control of their lives and quit the booze of their own accord. I did it! So can you.

Reld Hester makes this point in Psychology Today: “If you decide to make a change in your drinking, you’re more likely to stick with it if you take two steps. A) Write down specifically how and what you’re going to change, and B) tell friends and/or family who you think will be supportive of your efforts to change.”

He goes on to say that it is wise to “weigh the pros and cons of your drinking.” Again, take two steps. First write down keywords about what you like about drinking. Then write down keywords about what is worrying you about your drinking. Now compare the lists. Which list outweighs the other list? Do you feel uncomfortable or OK with your lists?

Ask yourself: What mistakes have I made due to my drinking choices and habits?

Facts About Drinking

It is all very well to drink. But there are some facts you need to remember about drinking. Drinking is not a game. It is a reality that drinking kills people. Alcohol causes cancer, not to mention heart disease, liver and kidney disease, diabetes and more.

Have you heard of alcohol tolerance? In this blog, we are talking change and change also comes into the equation when you are a solid drinker (someone who drinks often and a lot). The change comes with the raised tolerance levels.

The more you drink, the more you need and the more you realise that the alcohol is not doing anything to you or for you. So, you up the levels and even though you are not feeling wired or high, you are feeling more depressed and more dependent on that initial buzz that the first glass may give you.

According to drinkaware.com, “drinking less can help you reverse your tolerance to alcohol as well as reduce your risk of serious health harm.”

If you’re drinking regularly, then receptors in your brain will gradually adapt to the effects of alcohol. This means that the same amount of alcohol will have less short-term effect on you. This will lead to you drinking more alcohol to get the same feeling. It’s really important to recognise that tolerance to the short-term effects does not mean your health risks are lower. In fact, you could be at higher risk because you may not recognise how much you’re drinking.

It is important to realise that your body does not build up tolerance to the damage that the alcohol can do to your liver, heart, stomach and other organs.

If you are drinking a lot, you can change. It is time to change.

Drink Less, Live More

There is so much you can do to decrease your need for, and reliance on, alcohol. Where to start? Follow the global guidelines for what is the most you should be drinking per week: most countries stipulate the 14 units of alcohol a week (which means a little as they go by small glasses and measurements!). Have you considered taking drink free days in the week? But then, it is not wise to drink all your 14 units in one sitting as this would translate into binge drinking.

Read my blog about Grey Area Drinking to understand this topic better. And the podcast about binge drinking is an ear-opener too!

When you decide to change, then make the changes. Start to drink less. Intersperse your drinks with fizzy drinks or herbal teas or water. Drink less and snack more – this is not the time to worry about your weight but if you choose healthy snacks, you won’t pick up weight and remember to exercise daily.

One of the panacea’s for not drinking and making changes is EXERCISE, especially in the great outdoors! Get out into nature and revel in her beauty. I like to walk in nature every day and I also pick up litter and talk to the birds.

Take that first step. Do the quiz on Tribe Sober and start the 66-day challenge. This is your life, your body and your mind. The effects of drinking are dark and cannot just be swept under the carpet. Read Quitlit, listen to podcasts and be diligent about this new project in your life. It is exciting to set goals and to move forward.

Make those changes: What else can you do with your time now that drinking is taking up less hours of your day, week, and month? See my blog about hobbies and see if there is something that tickles your fancy. Try a new exercise or creative group, start an online course or read a book you have been putting off for so long because you could not see the words through the blur of the alcohol!

“Taking a break and reducing your tolerance is an important thing to do for your health. Breaking the cycle of drinking can prevent your body from becoming accustomed to alcohol and help to lower or ‘reset’ your tolerance.

These are the signs that you are becoming dependent on alcohol and need to make changes whether you like it or not:

  • Worrying about where your next drink is coming from and planning social, family and work events around alcohol
  • Finding you have a compulsive need to drink and finding it hard to stop once you start.
  • Waking up and drinking – or feeling the need to have a drink in the morning
  • Suffering from withdrawal symptoms, such as sweating, shaking and nausea, which stop once you drink alcohol

What is Your Change Plan?

  1. Changes I want to make:
  2. How important is it to me to make these changes (scale of 1 to 10)?
  3. How confident am I that I can make these changes (scale of 1 to 10)?
  4. The most important reasons I want to make these changes are:
  5. The steps I plan to take in changing are:
  6. How other people can help me:
  7. I will know my plan is working when:
  8. Some things that could interfere with my plan are:

Read the lead magnet called 3o Signs you Need to Take a Break from Alcohol. If you would like this lead magnet, please write to janet@nulltribesober.com. 

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