How did I resist the cravings to drink alcohol and stay motivated?
Today I want to talk about how I overcame the cravings, how I resisted the cravings and how I kept myself motivated especially in the early days.
I’ve spoken about this before, so most people would know that one of my biggest influences and motivations was my kid, Shawn was.
It started out as being a lesson in what I was doing wrong in my life as a parent.
Shawn’s mom died when he turned 13, and he had a hard time dealing with that.
He loved his mom and it was just me and him.
I sort of went to pieces after Angie died.
It was a tough time.
A lot of that going to pieces thing happened, basically drinking alcohol.
So, I was drinking a lot before then but I think I started drinking even more when she died.
Having Shawn was one of the things that kept me floating, kept me above ground, kept my head level enough so that I knew I had to look after him.
He was still only a young lad and he had his own problems.
It was only when I saw how much of an influence I was having on his alcohol that it really started to motivate me to stop.
That was a motivation more than an inspiration.
I’m not sure if I was inspired in the beginning.
I think I was more motivated by the things that I wanted to get away from, the pain I wanted to get away from rather than the pleasure.
I just knew that my life at that time wasn’t going where I wanted it to go.
I wasn’t being the person that I was capable of being, I wasn’t being the father that I was capable of being.
The inspiration came later, from doing these videos, from the life that I had outside of alcohol, from the confidence that I was building in myself, the beliefs that I was building in myself that I could do this, that I could quit drinking.
That was a big wall for me to step over.
At the beginning, I didn’t know what to expect.
I didn’t know where I was going to go.
I didn’t know what was facing me down the road, how my life was going to turn out, how all these different, small aspects of my life were going to turn out because alcohol was so involved in my life.
It was such a big part of my life.
Like I say, that framework that I built up around alcohol and all that bullshit around the different parts of drinking alcohol, my friends, the environment that you necessarily have to have to be a drinker.
I haven’t been in an off-license in so long.
Fair enough, I’ve been to supermarkets where they sell beer.
When I came over here, the idea of Bodega was like heaven.
Now it doesn’t have any meaning to me at all.
Wine always had a significance in my life.
I can’t really explain it.
Beer was the normal drink that I drank.
Wine was when I felt like I was being more sophisticated.
Beer was what I drank with the lads, wine was what I drank with my partner.
It’s a weird thing to get out in words but you know what I mean.
That there are certain drinks for certain times and they all have different meanings, and often these meanings are specific but unique to you.
But it was after I stopped drinking that I was able to become my own inspiration.
Because I started changing myself in so many different ways.
Ways that you can’t change when you’re drinking alcohol, you just can’t change in that way when you’re a drinker.
I’ve talked about this in previous videos, about cornerstone habits.
You can build a cornerstone habit that will either bring you up or drag you down.
Alcohol, when you start drinking it, your friends tend to be drinkers, your environment tends to be a drinking environment, your decisions tend to be not totally evolved, unless you’re drinking all the time, then a lot of your decisions are going to be based on other things.
But they’re going to be influenced by alcohol, by that lifestyle.
You gradually build up this framework over years and years and years.
It’s that framework that becomes the hardest thing to take down.
But it’s the thing that you have to take down at the end of the day.
So, it’s when you start to do something like this, you quit drinking alcohol and you take out that root, that foundational stone and then without you really needing to try a lot , you find that other parts of that life start to crumble as well.
Because they’re not being upheld by the one habit.
That gives you confidence.
When you start to think to yourself ‘I’m feeling good. Maybe if I need to go out walking to take my mind of the drinking, so I’ll go out walking’, and then you discover that you like walking.
You do other things in your life to distract your mind, and you realise that one or two of these things you actually like to do.
That gives you inspiration to carry on and try different things.
Another thing that will give you inspiration is your health.
As you see the effects of your health, you see your health getting better, you’re feeling better, this will inspire you.
At the end of the day, those first few days and weeks are the toughest.
These are the days when you have to push yourself through.
But you have to do anything you can to get yourself through those days.
Change your environment, get rid of certain people even if it isn’t long term.
In the short term, don’t meet up with these people.
Change your thinking, is the biggest part.
Don’t put the alcohol into your mouth and just keep pushing through regardless of what it takes.
If you’re not inspired in the beginning, you will be, by your own efforts.
You will inspire yourself and that’s one of the baseline things that you need.
Not only from my experience, but anybody else I’ve talked to who has successfully got past the few months, when they get to 1 year and they say ‘oh yeah, I never realised how much I could actually do.
I never realised that I could get through this stage with myself when I look back on the last year’.
I also say ‘when I look back on the last 3 ½ years of my life, I can’t believe how much I’ve done and achieved, just because I haven’t had that big elastic band puling me back all the time.
Not only pulling me back to where I was but pulling me back two steps, three steps into that.
Same with people who got past it.
They say ‘I can’t believe I’m done. I can’t believe where I am now, the way I’m thinking’.
That’s going to be your biggest inspiration, yourself.
I hope you enjoyed that video and got something out of it.
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Until next time, stay safe, keep the alcohol out of your mouth.
Keep inspiring yourself and you will find the determination, the motivation that you need inside of yourself.
GOOD HABITS RESULT FROM RESISTING TEMPTATION.
Until next time…
Onwards and Upwards!
I completely resonate with your story Kev my kids were 8 and 10 when my wife died aged only 41 i started drinking more to blot out all the pain and grief id always drank but it just spiralled out of control ,i realised after a while that alcohol wasnt the answer or never really was the answer
Great advice Kevin, and a terrible shame that u and your Son suffered.
I am still struggling to stop the drinking but all that you are saying makes sense.
At the end of the day that is what alcohol really is just an elastic band that holds me back.
I hope I can find the strength to stop but its a tough challenge.
Congratulations to all of you who have managed to steer clear of the drink.
Hi Kevin . good inspiration. After all it’s only ourself we’ll carry @ forever so best to be our own inspiration!
Thank you Kevin,
I think this video is one of many I will repeatedly watch! Thank you so much for your thoughts, inspiration and support.
I am struggling at the moment, but listening to your videos every day is such a boost. I did my first ‘parkrun’ last weekend in the UK an thoroughly enjoyed it, hoping it’s the start of new things for me.
Onwards and upwards ?
Good for you Vicky. It’s the start of something great. It’s up to you to keep it up and find other things to keep you motivated away from the booze.
You are an inspiration I actually went to see someone (therapy) yesterday about my drinking only to be told there’s nothing she could do and that I should go to my doctor or attend AA I was mortified as she said I was an addict and she couldn’t help me. I am glad to say this has made me look at myself in a different light and know the last place I need to be is AA. I will beat this myself and through listening to your great advice everyday.
Thank you Gill