(0.29) Are you risking it all for a drink?
(1.11) My missed opportunities
(2.15) It’s never too late
Is Drinking Jeopardizing Your Job or Business is the fourteenth question (from 20) in the Johns Hopkins series of videos to see if you are an alcoholic…
Are You Putting Your Livelihood on the Line So You Can Drink?
Putting your business or job at risk because of drinking takes on many forms…for instance turning up late for work or not turning up at all, missing important deadlines or producing sloppy work, letting your hangover moods influence relationships with co-workers.
That’s just scratching the surface.
We should all have an inbuilt shite detector, one that can detect just when the shit is going to hit the fan, one with big flashing warning lights and a huge siren. Then we might stop ourselves before pushing things too far.
The Drinking Golem Is Out To Get You!
The drinking golem is a sneaky little bastard. You don’t notice the problems at first. After all, coming to work with a hangover is something that everyone does from time to time. People will only talk about you when you do it regularly.
You might not realize that Sue from accounts just caught a whiff of drink from your breathe as you reached across her to grab the stack of photocopies from the machine.
She did notice and she told the girl at the desk opposite hers, who told the girl on reception, who told… blah blah
You are now the subject of office gossip, and one to be watched.
When you get fired they’ll say…
- “He came in drunk every day!”
- “I feel sorry for his family!”
- “I could tell he was a bum the minute I set eyes on him!”
And Then It’s Too Late!
I’ve always been self-employed which meant I couldn’t be sacked. I did lose customers because of my drinking, but I always told myself it was easy to get new ones.
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is that it’s much cheaper to keep customers rather finding new ones. Customers who are looked after will put the word out… they’ll do your advertising and marketing for you.
Word of mouth is a double edged sword. On the one hand it will promote what you do better than thousands of dollars in advertising. And it can cause you to lose customers really fast.
Your customers hire you because they want you to do a job that they can’t do or don’t want to do. But they’ll always want it done right.
When you drink every day it’s impossible to keep up standards. Your competition will kick your arse.
My competition was younger than me, they were fitter than me, and they didn’t drink. They had enthusiasm … I had my fuggled brain. They had bodily strength… I had a lethargic hung-over body wreck.
I had experience, I had a customer base built up over years, I had trust and respect, and I worked hard for every bit of it!
The golem came along and took the lot!
On many nights I would drink 10 pints at least, that’s 27 units of alcohol.
It takes a human 1 hour to deal with 1 unit of alcohol, that’s over a day to get rid of 10 pints worth.
So when a client is talking to me the next morning about his hedges, the hedges he planted with his own hands twenty years ago when he and his wife first bought the house, he can smell the stale alcohol stink on my breathe.
Living in Ireland always gave me a bit of latitude where drink was concerned. It was the done thing.
Drinking might be frowned upon, but always in a part-of-the-culture kind of way. “Out for a few last night, huh?” “It has to be done!”
But if you fuck up, that’s it… it’s over.
They might not say it to your face but they’ll never give you more work.
When you work for yourself you can’t see all the problems that drinking causes. Everyone is telling you, but you pass the buck.
It’s the bad economy.
It’s the forestry sector, it’s in a bad way.
I can’t get the help I need to really make a mark!
It’s never me!
Then it’s too late!
It’s all over and I’ve got to start again.
It’s hard to start again when you’re in your 40’s.
Where Am I Now?
I don’t drink any more.
I’m starting over with new ideas, new thoughts, and a new business.
And I love it!
This was the fourteenth post in the series of articles on the Johns Hopkins 20 questions. These questions were originally designed as a self-test to find out if you have a drinking problem. The language is a little old fashioned and some of the questions need to be tweaked, but you will get a good idea if you have any drinking problems. The more yes answers you give, the more of a problem you probably have.
Click here to find the introductory post on the “are you an alcoholic questions” along with a list of links, one for each question.
Leave a message below if you’re having problems with drink, or you’ve any comments about the articles or the site.
Until next time…
Onwards and Upwards…