Alcohol is often portrayed as a reward, something to relax with after a long day, and while that may be true, it has a lot of other effects too, some which aren’t nearly as nice. Moving away from drinking alcohol can be difficult; we can feel we’re missing out, mainly due to the perceived romantic association that it creates a good time. It might seem we need it to produce that image, but in reality, it’s what we’re doing and who we’re with that makes a good time. Alcohol doesn’t add anything to that.
One of the hardest things for me was getting over the idea of drinking. Hearing about a social event or driving past a beer garden was difficult; I imagined everyone enjoying themselves and felt I couldn’t. Now, a good time doesn’t include alcohol because for me, like many, the idea and the reality don’t align. I’d be chasing a feeling I couldn’t reach, where one glass isn’t enough. Rethinking and relearning are tricky, but not impossible. Now, more than ever, there are so many alternatives available which give us the opportunity to relax and unwind with something grown up or special, that won’t lead us to say something we shouldn’t or leave us waking up with a headache.
Finding an alcohol free option is quite a refreshing alternative, mainly because you can get the same enjoyment, without the side effects, and there are so many available now, there is literally something for everyone. Personally, I steer clear of alcohol free wines as they are a bit of a reminder of times gone by, but some of the botanical gins on offer are another story. If you’re thinking about cutting down or avoiding alcohol for any reason, summer BBQ’s and social gatherings don’t need to be avoided. Many of the options, especially the alcohol free beers, don’t look any different to the traditional variety, so no one would even have to know! So why not, when you can have a drink without getting a sore head or saying something you come to regret!
I wrote this piece originally for Launceston Life - but I wanted to share it with you all too.