Stop Drinking Alcohol 73 Transcript
Before we start this week, I will answer a few questions in the videos. We’ll try something new. We’ll split up the main video, do all the questions in one video and then split it up in two or three separate videos.
The reason I’m doing that is I’m getting questions about what I’ve done before and I just can’t find it because it’s in the middle of one of the Stop Drinking Alcohol videos. So if you watch the main video, you don’t have to go and watch the other videos. I’ll just put all the material into one video and split the questions off and put those in separate videos.
Having a “Last Drink”
The first question I got this week was from Chris over on the website.
Hi Kevin, great podcast. What’s your view on having a designated ‘last drink?’ I’ve heard that some people make a point of making it memorable, or even deliberately unpleasant. Do you remember your last one?
My Last Drink
It was a glass of wine that I had at my sister’s house on New Year’s Day. I didn’t intend to go out with a bang, as they say. I didn’t even finish it. It’s funny because I tried to build myself up to it. I didn’t want what I was doing because I was completely done with it.
It’s like saying goodbye to an old friend. The whole process is like a grieving process when you first start out. You do miss them out of your life. It’s like you go through a wake, have the last drink and hold it up.
As far as this goes then, my last drink did taste disgusting. It wasn’t pleasant in any way. I think I filled my head with so much negativity about alcohol in general by that stage.
I’ve gone through the whole thing over Christmas. I drank enough and I was well on my way to quitting, especially with the argument with my son that just shook me up. It was just one of those things where a lot of different catalysing events started coming together as they happened over the years. One event is all it takes to push you towards the edge and then you start thinking about everything else.
At the moment, we’re in an apartment overlooking the Med. It’s a great place but it’s just a holiday home. So we’ve been trying to move inland. It’s just that my work never feels like it’s done. When I want to relax, I can’t relax. When I want to work, the vibe is still in that environment where I’m trying to relax.
The point was that if we move inland, it’s just going to be a lot better. When we first moved in here, we said that we’d stay here for four or five years. Now that we’ve decided to make the move, we’re finding stuff that is wrong with this place. We’re dumbing down what this place is like and we’re bigging up what it will be like to move in to another house.
That’s the type of process that you go through once you’ve really decided that enough is enough and you’re going to quit. You start to look for reasons why you want to quit. For me, it was just that one catalytic moment – the argument.
I’ve been thinking about quitting for a long time. I had gone on to different websites and forums. I remember one of the posts that I put up where I was talking about moderation.
There’s no problem about moderating. Surely I can moderate my alcohol consumption. The people that had quit were saying it’s actually the same thing that I’m saying now. That it’s almost impossible. Once you’ve been in that frame of mind where you drink to get drunk, you’ll always want to moderate.
Should You Have A “Last Drink?”
So the last drink again. It’s a good idea if you can try to make it as disgusting as possible.
At the beginning of his book Easy Way to Control Alcohol, Allen Carr said, “Don’t stop drinking until you’ve read this book. Wait until the end to take your final sip of alcohol.” I get where he was coming from that perspective.
He was saying carry on drinking while he’s talking about the different aspects of drinking and breaking apart all the misconceptions and perceptions that we have about alcohol. He was just smashing them all down, all about “I drink because it relaxes me,” or “I drink because I like the taste” for whatever reason.
While you’re reading it and you’re drinking, you’re thinking about this and it’s going through your head. Once you get to the end, he says, “Take your final drink now,” and he explains why he left it until the end.
Don’t make the final drink into a celebration. If you’re trying to make your final drink taste as good as it can and say au revoir to it, you’re just putting it up on that pedestal again. All it would take is one drink for me and I’d be back on it.
I can tell you now from my point of view that if I had one drink now, not that I won’t have a drink or I will ever have a drink, I don’t want to drink. I wouldn’t go back on it. I don’t believe that. I think it’s that all or nothing mentality.
If I had one drink now, it just proves that I can’t do it. It just proves that I’m an alcoholic. All it proves is that your thinking is skewed. All it proves is that you really want to go back to the drink. Because if you didn’t want it, you wouldn’t drink anyway. Period.
Tiredness and Sleeplessness after Quitting
Second question comes from David Vose on Facebook:
How long does the tiredness and not sleeping last when you suddenly stop drinking alcohol after being quite a heavy drinker? Any help or advice please?
It’s one of the only things that I ever went through while I was quitting. It’s going to last as long as it can.
I still get tired. It’s the nature of being alive and of aging. The sleeplessness is another thing for me. It lasted a month. It was gradual. The first few days were pretty bad, sleeping hardly anything.
Your whole body is trying to balance itself out. The longer you’ve been drinking, the more your body is used to knocking itself out at night just having the alcohol and being that tired.
To be honest, one of the best ways that your body knows how to deal with alcohol is to shut most of the stuff down and that includes your consciousness. Your waking brain takes a lot of the energy just to stay awake. Of course when you are awake and moving around, by putting you asleep, at least the body is conserved a lot more energy and can put a lot more energy into getting rid of the poison.
How to Deal With Tiredness and Sleeplessness
One of the things you can do is try to prepare yourself for bed. That’s one thing that we’re also not used to doing. We’re so used to being able to hop into bed and fall asleep because we’re drunk that we don’t have to go through any rituals.
There are a lot of things that you can do to try to get yourself ready for bed like an hour beforehand. Take a warm bath.
One of the things that you have to do at the beginning of this is just to accept that you’re not going to get any sleep and build that into your life. It’s not going to last long. Your body can’t really deal with that. It needs you to get enough rest so it’s going to do its best to try to bring things back into balance.
Whether or not you get down to get a pill, it’s up to you. I don’t like it so I wouldn’t do that. If you’re not having sleep after the first week or so, then definitely go down to your doctor. Try some homeopathic remedy.
I haven’t heard of people having sleep problems after a month. In general, it’s either between a couple of weeks or a couple of months. It’s not something that happens all of a sudden. It’s a gradual process. It’s just your body getting used to not having the alcohol in your body anymore.
The only thing that I can really say to you is that it is going to take what it is. You have to wait these things up. What is good for you? Is it good to carry on drinking, doing the damage that way? Or are you going to put up with the discomfort for a few days or a few weeks or even a couple of months? If that’s what needs to happen, only you can do it.
Body Recovery/Repair from Alcohol Damage
Final question is from Rosie by email:
Will damage done to my body by drinking alcohol ever be repaired?
It depends on what type of damage. If you’re talking about the liver, the liver is one of the few organs in your body that can regenerate, that can repair itself.
So long as the damage hasn’t gone too far, into cirrhosis, then it can heal itself. Cirrhosis is scarring. It’s like when you get a deep cut, it produces a scar. There’s not a lot that you can do about it. There’s certain treatments that you can have surgically that can reduce the overall scarring.
When you’re talking about overall damage to your body, I think one of the main things is that it’s up to you to do what you can to heal.
I was listening to a doctor on YouTube the other day and he was talking about patients coming in and out of the surgery. He said that about 80% of people that come through the doors of the hospital to get treated through surgery are there because of conditions that are self-inflicted – obesity, lung problem because of smoking, drinker, people who take too many pills and potions.
Self-Recovery: Positive Thinking and Positive Action
Instead of trying to deal with things, they go down to the doctor and expect a magical solution. Another area is not just because of what people are doing to themselves but also what they’re not doing – not eating healthily, not getting the right nutrition, thinking negatively.
Whatever way you want to look at it, it’s just being nice to yourself, talking good to yourself. Just because you’ve had a so-called failure, it doesn’t make you into a failure. You have to learn by your mistakes.
Just by thinking positively isn’t going to help you. It’s not the “be all and end all.” It’s not the magic pill. It has to be combined with positive action. You can think all you want about being positive and be positive about everything until the day that you die. But if you don’t do something about it, then it’s all useless.
As far as repairing the damage, when you do stop drinking, your body finally is able to concentrate on getting rid of the alcohol out of your system and finally repairing some of the damage.
The whole thing is to try to help your body out as much as you can. There’s no point just sitting there and saying, “I’ll stop drinking. My body is going to do it on its own.”
You need to get out and exercise, even if it’s only just walking, just getting the air circulate your body. Combine that with good nutrition, with eating proper food and avoiding the bad stuff.
If you do positive self-talk, good nutrition, and exercise, you’ll give your body every chance of recovering and healing itself. Give quitting a chance and give it as much help as you can do and give it every chance of healing anything.
That’s it for this week. Anyway, I’ve nearly finished the audio version of the book. That should be up on Monday.
The same thing as the last one, I’ll send out a discount code for those on the newsletter. If you haven’t bought the book, I’m offering a package as well so you can get the book and the audiobook together. If you’ve already bought the e-book and you want the audiobook, just give me a shout and I’ll also send you discount code.
If you have any questions on this video, just give us a shout. Until next time. Onwards and upwards.