A huge obstacle that you will have to overcome when you quit drinking is the brainwashing that society forces on us from the day that we were born. To completely get away from alcohol drinking and thinking, we have to change the way we view alcohol… alcohol within our culture, our families, our social circles, and especially in our own thinking. One of the main areas of alcohol propaganda comes from our environment. This video tries to your mind to some of that brainwashing.
When you are quitting drinking, what are some of the environmental and personal obstacles that are going to stand in your way of quitting drinking alcohol?
Alcohol Social Acceptance
The first, and I think the biggest one, is the societal acceptance of alcohol, the way we accept alcohol as part of our normal lives.
It is being pushed on us from all different angles by many different types of people across the timeframe that stretched from the day we were born. When you think about it, from the day you’re born, you have all these influences on how you think about alcohol.
One of the most pervasive influences is when you see alcohol everywhere and you see all sorts of people drinking it, from your parents, grandparents, their friends and your wider family, and then you start going to school and, even though you don’t see your teachers drinking in school, but during social occasions, you’ll see them taking some. You’ll see alcohol advertising everywhere.
From the day you’re born and from the day you’re aware of the things around you, even from before you were aware, these things are seeping in as normalcy.
So, by the time you get to 18, it’s almost a rite of passage that you go from being a child into an adult by taking a drink.
No matter what yardstick you measure this by, we look at alcohol as being a normal part of our society.
Even if you have had experiences of severe alcohol problems where people have got a lot of wide ranging problems associated with their problems of drinking alcohol, some people come from homes which were completely fucked up because one or both the parents were drinking alcohol, it is still a part of our society in general, still a part of what we think of as normal.
When you look at alcohol itself, there is nothing normal about putting a toxin into your body. When we look at the normalcy of getting drunk, there’s nothing normal about it. What is getting drunk? When you start asking yourself what’s happening inside your body when you get drunk, we look at it as something fun that’s happening to us, something that relaxes us and gives us a bit of pleasure. But when you look at the facts of what is happening inside your body as soon as alcohol gets in there, it’s a different story.
Your Body on Red Alert
As soon as you put alcohol inside your body, your body goes on red alert. Your liver shuts down everything else, all the other processes that it’s supposed to be doing, and it focuses its entire function on getting rid of the toxin.
So, the more you drink, the more your liver has got to deal with, the more time your liver has got to deal with this.
The average liver deals with 1 unit of alcohol per hour, which means that if you drink an average drink, it’s about two units of alcohol, then one average drink is going to take your liver two hours to metabolize, to break down.
First of all, it breaks the alcohol down into something more toxic -acetaldehyde. Then it breaks it down into acetic acid, which it gets rid of.
Your body has to have critical chemicals and hormones in order to change one chemical into another chemical, and not only has your liver got to have the capacity, it’s only got a limited capacity, your body has only got a limited capacity to produce these hormones. These hormones have to be produced from something else. There’s a chain reaction that goes back.
What Is Drunkenness?
The alcohol gets into your brain. It’s one of the only things which can pass through the blood brain barrier, which is a protective membrane that goes around your brain and protects it against all sorts of viruses and nasty shit that you don’t want getting in there. Alcohol is one of the things you can put a dead brain into to try and preserve it, and it will preserve it for a very long time.
This stuff actually gets into your brain, and what’s it doing to your brain? The drunkenness that you feel is a reaction of your body to the toxin. This is the same reaction that your body would have to any poison.
If you take alcohol in high enough doses, it will kill you. It will just shut down your body because your body can’t deal with it.
This is the same with a lot of other toxins that you take, if you take them in large enough amounts. Obviously, the more concentrated the toxin, the less you need for it to have fatal effects.
Drunkenness is your body’s reaction to the alcohol. It’s how your body is reacting. When you look at all the parts of drunkenness, the slurred speech, the unsteady movement, your brain is not functioning properly, you can’t think straight about a lot of things-this is . This this a direct impact of the alcohol in your brain, in your bloodstream, throughout your body.
So when we look at alcohol, look at how we view being drunk or how much alcohol we’re going to drink, or how much we think is normal to drink, this is all reflected in our society and what it thinks is normal.
Garbage Dump Troop
There was a famous study done in Africa with Savannah baboons who eventually got the nickname of the Garbage Dump Troop.
Basically, it was a troop of baboons and they happened to be in the vicinity of a local Safari lodge. This lodge was feeding the people very well. Anything that was left over was dumped into a rubbish dump around this Safari lodge.
This troop of baboons found this lodge, and decided that it would be a great idea, they obviously found all these different foods that were left over and started eating them.
They’d come to and fro from the place where they lived. Eventually, they just started hanging around in the trees surrounding the rubbish dump and waited for the daily supply of food to be delivered to them.
Eventually, all these animals got obese and they started to get all the diseases associated with obesity like heart disease, diabetes, Rheumatoid Arthritis and so on [diseases associated with Western society].
They became obese because they were eating too much of the wrong food and weren’t getting any exercise. They were no longer going to and fro from their original place where they used to live. They just moved in by the rubbish dump.
I think this is a similar thing with alcohol as well.
Disneyland for Rats
There was a famous study as well called Rat Park, only it was done with cocaine and not alcohol. But it’s the same basis.
Rat Park came about because there were other experiments about addiction and cocaine use that said that if you give a rat cocaine, that it would basically keep taking the cocaine over and over again – it’s that addictive- until it would die from the results. It wouldn’t give a shit about anything else its life, it would just keep taking this drug.
This particular scientist – I can’t remember his name offhand. I’ll stick in a video, watch it please. There’s a video I watched recently that should shed a bit of light.
But the basic story is that this scientist looked at all these tests and said ‘when you look at the environment the rats were put into, they’re in a cage, which was bare. There was nothing except a bit of bedding, and they gave it a bit of food, but there was nothing else in there. They gave the rat either a choice of the cocaine water or normal water, and the rat chose the cocaine water all the time.
His hypothesis was that if you put the rat into a different environment, it wouldn’t have done that, that it was mostly because of the environment the rat was in, because it was a shitty environment, and that it just wanted to get out. Taking the cocaine water was its only release.
So, what he did was he built this thing called a Rat Park, which was basically a Disneyland for rats.
It had everything you could want if you were a rat. It had somewhere to go and play. It had somewhere to procreate with your Mrs. Rat. It had plenty of food and all that kind of stuff.
It also had this cocaine bottle. None of the rats killed itself in the cocaine bottle. The rats would go every so often and have a little sip, but none of them got addicted to the stuff.
Even the rats that were taken out of the old cage and put into the lovely environment, they would in the beginning go straight for the bottle with the cocaine in it, because they were conditioned to do this.
But after a while, once they saw what was around them and available to them, they stopped doing it. They weaned themselves off it and they didn’t go near that stuff anymore.
Have a look at this video anyway and then we’ll come back.
In the 70’s, a research experiment found that when a rat is put in an empty cage all alone with two water bottles, one normal and one drugged, it gets addicted to the drugged water, and eventually dies of malnutrition.
The experiment was seen as proof that drugs are uncontrollable, and it laid the foundation for 40 years of drug policy with strict laws, rehab centres that focused on withdrawal, and a massive war on drugs, making it clear that drugs are bad.
What most people don’t know is that in the same decade, another scientist, Professor Bruce Alexander, thought it was obvious that lonely rats in boring cages would choose drugs over water. So he put them in a Rat Park, a lush cage with friends and everything a rat could want while still having free access to drugs.
Surprisingly, his rats chose not to use the drugs.
The researcher even took the study one step further and had the rats use drugs for 57 days in the lonely cage until they became heavily addicted, and then placed them in the rat part.
Astonishingly the rats gradually reduced their drug use until they stopped using them altogether, and lived the rest of their lives drug-free.
Experiments like these happen to humans all the time.
One example is in hospitals where heavily injured patients are given a medical form of heroin. This heroin is much stronger than the heroin used by drug addicts. Despite months of use, these medical users just stop when they go home to a life where they are surrounded by a loving family.
The same drug used for the same length of time, turns street users who are alone and unhappy into desperate addicts.
The rat park experiment didn’t show that chemical addictions don’t exist, but it showed that they are not the only thing that matters in drug abuse. Maybe a person’s access to a functioning social life and a lush cage, are even more important than continuing the war on drugs mission, of making drugs unavailable, and penalizing the users.
So that video was from a channel called Minute Videos.
Nature or Nurture
I think the implications are clear in that. There’s the nature or nurture thing.
There are a lot of people that say if you’ve got a gene and you’re addicted to alcohol because you inherited the gene form your parents, and you can see this if you go to the homes of alcoholics, then they are more likely to be alcoholics.
But also if you take a person who drinks, they’re more likely to drink because their parents drink, or if they come from a society where alcohol is present, and they are more likely to get into problems with the whole thing.
I hesitate to say this with problems because, for me, I wish I never touched the stuff. I wish it just wasn’t in my life, because putting a toxin into your body in the first place is a problem to start with.
Starting with the Assumption That Alcohol Drinking Is Normal
If you start off with the assumption that alcohol is normal, then everyone you look at then who has got a drinking problem is on a far end of the scale.
But if you start off with the assumption of no alcohol drinking, putting this stuff into your body, is not normal, then anyone who puts it into their body is acting in an abnormal way, and they have a drinking problem.
The point is that if your environment is shitty, then you’re more likely to look for ways of escaping. And if you can’t find that escape in your real life, if someone comes up to you and says ‘I have a good way of getting out of your head and forgetting about this.’ It’s either alcohol or cocaine or heroin, or whatever it is, then you’re more likely to take that option.
There’s another famous study of soldiers coming back from Vietnam, and the US government thought they were going to have some real fucking difficulties, because a lot of the soldiers in Vietnam were addicted to Heroin.
They were taking it because…well you can imagine what the circumstances were like.
They thought, the government, when these guys came back to the states, they would have a lot of addicts on their hands that needed to be taken off this Heroin.
When these veterans came back to America, most of them just stopped taking the stuff. There were a few addicts who couldn’t stop, but most of them when they came out of that crappy environment, that nightmarish environment that they were in, they came out and went back to their normal lives.
Heron is basically Morphine. Morphine is the same stuff. Heroin is taken in hospitals. It’s used to treat patients as a great painkiller. You’ll find patients in the hospital who have been on Heroin for months in hospital, and once they get out they don’t have the same side effects that they have if they take it in the outside world.
It’s because of environmental factors, they play such a massive role.
The point here is that you have to change your environment. You have to make the change yourself because no one will make the change for you. No one can make these changes for you because everyone is leading their own life for a start.
People can help you but they’re not going to put in the hard work for you. You’re going to have to do that yourself. A lot of people will help you but if they don’t see you helping yourself, they’re going to give up.
You have to put in the hard work.
Stop the Brainwashing
One of the first ways to do this is to get rid of, or diminish the brainwashing as much as you can. You can’t get rid of some of the brainwashing, but you’re going to understand how it’s affecting you, and often times, that’s all it takes for you to be able to overcome it.
Part of the brainwashing is that you don’t know you’re being brainwashed. You don’t understand it. But you need to understand that it is propaganda, all the alcohol marketing is propaganda, all the brainwashing we have had since we grew up is a form of propaganda.
And we are our biggest enemies once it comes to propaganda because we self-propagandize ourselves all the time.
We tell ourselves it’s alright and it’s fun to drink. We tell ourselves that it’s part of our social life. That’s all part of our own brainwashing.
So we have to stop doing that.
What You Focus on Is What You Get
One of the best ways of getting away from the alcohol thinking is not think about it. Don’t focus on it.
Focus on something in your future, something you want to get or be in your life. Focus on that rather than the alcohol.
We do this when we’re drinking alcohol, when we start drinking more than we want to drink. We construct stories so that it seems logical, but all the time the stories are full of holes.
It’s your job from the beginning to pick apart these holes, to pick out these places where the logic just doesn’t fit.
The more distance you put between yourself and alcohol, the more you uncover these holes and figure out that it wasn’t logical at all. You figure out that what I was saying to myself was complete bullshit.
The environment is one of the biggest influences in your life. It’s one of the things that can influence you the most. But at the end of the day, the biggest influencer that you will ever have in your life is you. Your environment can’t do anything to you unless you allow it.
So, get control of your thinking. If you can do that, then your environment is nothing. You can overcome all that.
Until next time…
Onwards and Upwards!