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Finding the Determination to Overcome Your Drinking Problem | SDA47

by | Stop Drinking Alcohol, Year One | 4 comments

Stop Drinking Alcohol Week 47 – Determination (Transcript)

How’re you doing? I’m Kevin O’Hara for Alcohol Mastery.

This is Stop Drinking Alcohol Week 47.

Refinding Routines

Just getting back into routine after I’ve been away, so it’s the first full week of videos I’d done. I had a question this week as well off a guy, and he asked whether I made the decision to quit drinking sort of over a length of time, or was it because of one isolated event, something that just forced me over the edge.

Everything or Isolated Push

Really, it was a bit of both. When I look out over my past few years, I think I’ve always been heading in that general direction of quitting. I stopped five years ago when I got my license taken off me. I really wanted to stay off the drink then for just a year, just while I didn’t have my license basically, to prove to myself that I could do it and for various different reasons. And mostly because I had a big shock to my system when I got stopped by the police and your license is taken off you. Stupid thing to be doing but there you go – it just shows you how far your judgment disappears when you’re relying on drink that much.

The Final Straw

Anyway, it was really over a length of time that I made the decision but it was last year coming up to Christmas, I sort of was toying with the idea of stopping drinking. My son came over in December, towards the middle of December just to spend Christmas with me. It was only when he was gone that I realized how much I actually missed him and he was here for only a few days, and when he was gone [I realised that] all we did was drink [while he’d been here]. It wasn’t what we were doing all the time, but it was the basic focus of every day. It was where we’re gonna go that evening and who we’re gonna be with, and should we get a few cans in the house, and oh look at this wine; you can get a full gallon of it for 4 and a half Euros.

Drunken Stupidity

It was basically focused around that and by the time he went back I felt like I hadn’t spent any quality time with him at all. I was arguing with him. Not mad arguments – drunken arguments. And he’s the person that I care most about in the world. We’re really close, and it’s just something that I don’t want to be doing with my adult son, is arguing with him about anything. I don’t think that’s in my ideal of my relationships so, once he’d gone back I sort of made up my mind there and then that I wasn’t gonna put up with this anymore. The only reason I could stop it, the only way I could stop it was by not drinking. I never argue with my son, I never argue with anyone really, when I haven’t been drinking.

Determination Video

Later on in the week I’m gonna be doing a video about determination and basically, do you have the determination to quit? I’ll be talking about things like goal-setting and all that kind of stuff. Personally, I think I have the most determination about quitting drinking and about achieving my goals than I have ever had for anything else in my life. It’s just really set me on a track now that I can’t see myself ever getting off of.

Replacing The Drinking

At the end of the day, quitting drinking is not just about quitting the drinking, it’s about replacing it with something else. You have to replace it with something else, it’s a lot of time missing out of your life. So if you’re going to replace it with something, why not replace it with something that is massive? There’s no reason why you shouldn’t. That’s what I’m trying to do with myself, with my own dreams now, is to just make them as big as I possibly can.

Why Not Shoot For The Stars?

I love life. I love my life. I love living. But life is short, so why the hell not? Why restrict yourself? The thing is, why not aim high? You have nothing to lose. The only thing that you’re losing alcohol, but you have everything to gain. My life now is just full of possibilities. The possibilities are infinite, and it’s all to do with me quitting alcohol. If I hadn’t quit I’d still be in that cycle. The thing is, I’d be afraid to go back drinking again. That’s one of my biggest reasons, my biggest motivations and the thing that’s keeping me determined is that I know that the feeling that I’m getting now for life…If I touch a drop again, and I tempt that, I’m risking losing everything, so that’s a big fear. There’s no possibility of that. Like I said, it’s just never happening again.

Telling It As It Is!

What for? Some water horrible poison shit that tastes horrible you have to force down your throat…It’s not happening for me ever again. One of the things I use to keep my determination up is, if I’m filling myself with fear or I’m feeling a bit of doubt about anything that I’m doing, I talk to my partner. She’s very level-headed. She does drink. She’s somebody that I find very easy to talk to. She’ll tell me a spade is a spade, that kind of thing. She keeps me level, and if I’m having doubts – not about drinking specifically, but about anything, she’s the person that I go to talk to.

Super Strength Visualisation

Another thing that I use a lot is visualization. It works very well for me; I’m a very visual person inside. That’s the way I see things. It helps me really to focus myself and to keep the determination, to keep motivated, is to think about my son. Like I said, he’s the person that I feel the closest to in life, and he’s the person I want to see me in the best light. I don’t want him to see me as this drunken bollocks anymore. The way I do this with Sean is if I’m feeling any way bad about drinking or it comes into my head I visualize Sean just being disapproving or being pissed off with me, really. And I visualize him as being very very pissed off, I mean he’s telling me what a fucking idiot I am and I can just see his face is disgusted. He’s walking away from me and saying he doesn’t want to talk to me anymore.

Big, Bold, & Beautiful

That’s the way I visualize it now. I know he’s never gonna do that but you have to make powerful visualizations in order for them to work. And it works exactly the same way the opposite way around. You can make powerful visualizations to give yourself a pat on the back, so I see Sean being proud of me and telling me, in no uncertain terms, how proud he is of now.

How You Want Your Children To See You!

Every father wants their children to be proud of them and they have an image in their head of what that would manifest itself if the child came up to them and started talking to them, this is what they think in their head. That’s what their kid is gonna say. So that’s exactly the way I do things now. I don’t expect him to do that in real life but it really, really helps.

Big Power

If you’re going to use these metaphors, if you’re going to use people visualizations in your head, then just make them as powerful as you can. That’s the trick. It might not work for you but it certainly does work for me.

If you have any questions about any of the points I’ve been making in these videos then please leave a message.

The Last Drink – EVER!

Next week I’ll be talking about never having to drink again. You know that fear that you have at the beginning when you quit, and you think well, can I really face never having an alcoholic beer again? So tune in for that one.

Until next time…

My name is Kevin O’Hara for Alcohol Mastery.

Onwards and upwards!

Thanks for visiting the site.
Until next time…
Onwards and Upwards!

Previous Posts That May Help You

Stop Drinking Alcohol Week 44
Stop Drinking Alcohol Week 45
Stop Drinking Alcohol Week 46


  1. Didi

    Hi Kevin,

    You say, You don’t want to drink ever again and your life is changed for the best. And than you said, you have to do visualisations and things like that to keep you motivated. My question is: if you (one) quit drinking for so long and really likes it, do you still sometimes feel the craving? Every time I stop drinking, I start again because I can’t handle the cravings. If they still there after 47 weeks, will they be there forever??? What a horrible scenario!

    Many Thanks, Didi

    • Kevin O'Hara

      Hi Didi,
      I still get impulsive thoughts about drinking, but they are nothing more than momentary impulses, and they are certainly not cravings for alcohol. I think it’s my brain wishing for an illusory love that has been lost. I know the feelings are not real, they are merely the ghosts in the machine, habit memories. These habit memories are just a momentary fancy for what used to be so familiar. I drank for over 30 years, after all, and drinking became a part of my everyday life. The brain loves that familiarity – it makes things so much easier. Think of them as a kind of dejavu! They are fleeting thoughts that you recognise as once being part of you, then you carry on with your new life… I don’t need to use any tool more powerful than my common sense to conquer these fancies.
      I find visualisations are of great benefit in my ordinary, day to day life. I am a lazy person by nature, often I find myself contemplating spending the entire afternoon watching a couple of good movies when it would be much better spent pushing my business forward or getting to grips with one of the many books I have bought but not yet read. Keeping myself on track with my greater goals means never looking back on drinking as anything but in the past.
      Hope that clears it up…

      • Didi

        Thank you Kevin. Yes, it cheered me up. All your videos do. You explain things so well and I am managing so much better since I watch your videos. I “moved” myself into a different country for 6 weeks now, where alcohol is really expensive. Changing my daily environment would help to break the drinking routine, I thought. If I would be rich, I would go to rehab to Thailand, were for sure I would not be able to get a drop of Alkohol for 4 – 6 weeks and all the pampering on top. Jeeezzzzz….
        Being here alone, definitely helps, but I still get panic attacks and than I go out to buy some beer or wine. I drink much, much less than at home, firstly it’s is so expensive here, and second, I am in a different environment. I am still sad though, that I can’t manage without, the panic attacks are quite strong. I know, it’s not real the panic, but it still does the job.
        It’s not that I get drunk, I don’t drink to get drunk, it’s the calming effect I crave at the end of the day.
        Thank you so much for your work, you helped me along very much and I hope, I can nail it while I am away from home. Still 5 weeks to go.
        Kindest regards, Didi

  2. Julie D.

    My problem still is sleeping. It can be four or five days before I sleep & I’m always exhausted. Anyone else have this?
    Going to Europe for a month on Wed. Hopefully it’ll get better. I’m also afraid of my house– have had numerous breakins. Thanks. Julie


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