How to stop drinking alcohol? 10 tips to fight alcoholism


In this article, we will discuss some helpful tips that can be of great assistance in starting the path to a healthier, alcohol-free lifestyle.

Table of contents

Quitting alcohol can be a very challenging task, since this substance is deeply rooted in our culture and is easily accessible. Some guidelines can help achieve a healthier lifestyle.

Thanks to the results of the research and the awareness campaigns based on them, we now know that there is no recommended amount of alcohol consumption

A significant part of the population has already stopped conceiving alcoholic beverages as harmless substances, since the collective awareness of the risks they pose to health has been significantly increased.

How to stop drinking alcohol? 10 tips to fight alcoholism

Alcoholism, addiction and the mind

However, this change of mentality towards alcohol has not been followed by a real reduction in its consumption. This substance is deeply rooted in our culture and is easily accessible, so stopping the habit of drinking is not an easy task at all.

Although as a general rule it is ideal to consume as little alcohol as possible, there are special situations in which its withdrawal must be total and strict.

This is the case of those who have developed an alcohol addiction, who suffer from a strong dependence and an intense withdrawal syndrome if consumption is abandoned or reduced.

Alcohol should also be radically excluded in the case of pregnant women, minors and people with certain diseases. In the rest of the population, even if consumption is not completely abandoned, a reduction in it can also bring significant health benefits.

Given the difficulty of taking alcohol out of our lifestyle, starting to reduce its consumption may require the help of professionals.

In the same way, the support of family and friends is crucial to successfully abandon consumption.

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I have a problem with alcohol: how should I act?

Next, we are going to discuss some steps to follow that can be of great help to start getting rid of alcohol.

1. Turn to a psychology professional

There are many psychologists specialized in the field of addictions. These professionals are trained to address situations of great complexity and help their patients get out of the hell of addiction.

There is nothing wrong with asking for help, in fact, it is a great first step to start a healthy and balanced life.

Do not be afraid to feel judged by the professional, because the psychologist will welcome everything you tell him without entering to make assessments, he will listen to you and try to develop an action plan to help you in coordination with other professionals.

2. Recognize that there is a problem

Although it may seem very obvious, recognizing that something is not right is one of the most difficult steps that can be taken to achieve recovery.

Usually, addiction is conceived in a dichotomous way, in terms of all or nothing, I understand that those who suffer from this problem are only those who drink at all times without barely being able to stand up.

However, there are many degrees of addiction and many ways to drink too much.

What determines if there is a problem is the interference of alcohol abuse in the person's daily life, who will see their relationships, their professional life and their health seriously affected. 

In case there is an addiction, the person will feel that he does not lead the life he wants to have, tends to worry about how much he drinks, compares his consumption with that of others, etc.

However, those who suffer from alcohol addiction go through a first phase marked by denial, in which they rule out that there is any problem with the way they drink.

Taking the step of recognizing that something is wrong is not easy and therefore the support of the environment and professionals is essential to start solving the problem.

3. Inform your environment of your goal

Because the support of your environment is a huge help in the recovery process, a good idea is to notify the people close to you of your goal of getting alcohol out of your life.

Informing others will help you to commit firmly to your goal and not throw in the towel at the first change.

By indicating your goal, they will surely commit to supporting you and making your way a little easier. Although you are the one who must stop drinking, they can reduce your chances of relapse with small measures, such as not offering you alcohol at celebrations or proposing plans in which the drink is not involved.

4. Be clear about your motivation

Quit drinking is not an easy task, so it is always important to remember what the engine of your change is. Each person has their own motives in the short and long term, so you should reflect on all those things that alcohol prevents you from enjoying or getting.

For example, abusing drinking can prevent you from:

  • enjoying your family,
  • performing well at work,
  • talking to other people consciously,
  • having quality free time, saving money, etc.

5. Stay away from those who incite you to drink

Although our loved ones will go out of their way to help us remove alcohol from our lives, it is also possible that other people are an obstacle to achieving it.

Certain toxic or familiar friendships may insist that we drink, either because they are unaware of the seriousness of an addiction or because they also abuse alcohol themselves. This is not surprising, since many of our relationships are created and maintained in leisure environments where alcohol is the thread.

In any case, you must make the decision to get away from this type of people, since continually exposing yourself to temptation will make you fall again sooner or later.

It may cost you at first, and you may feel that it may be too drastic. However, by putting friendship and your health on the scales, it goes without saying what should weigh more.

6. Clean your house of alcohol

One of the most effective strategies to avoid falling into the temptation to drink is to eliminate any traces of alcohol from your house. If you eliminate the products that contain this substance (not only drinks, but also perfumes, medicines...), the probability of relapse will be significantly reduced and the recovery will not be so difficult for you.

Try to look for drinks that you like and that naturally do not contain alcohol. Avoid resorting to the alcohol-free alternatives of alcoholic beverages, as this will not help you stop feeling the desire to consume.

On the contrary, it will increase it, since when you taste a similar flavor without that spark typical of alcohol, you will feel a boost towards the drink that is difficult to control.

7. Reflect on what has led you to take refuge in alcohol?

The recovery has not only to do with stopping consuming, but also with an analysis of why we have come to abuse the drink. Many times there is no single cause, but the addiction has resulted from the confluence of several factors.

However, understanding what has led us to this situation is essential to attack the root of the problem and move forward without risk of relapse.

For example, alcohol may have served as a refuge because you do not have adequate coping skills in adverse situations. Working on the problem areas with the psychologist will be an essential point of therapy to achieve complete recovery.

8. Stay active

The temptation to drink can intensify in those moments when we feel bored or empty. For this reason, quitting alcohol also requires finding rewarding activities, things that take us, motivate us and keep us busy.

You can start learning a language, practice a sport, make plans with your family, participate in a volunteer, etc.

9. Learn to say NO

This is one of the most expensive points when it comes to quitting alcohol. The drink is deeply rooted in our culture, and we find it in leisure, celebrations, family reunions, etc. Therefore, sooner or later the time will come when someone, innocently or not, offers us a drink.

Although it is advisable to get away from avoidable temptations, it is also necessary to train our assertiveness to learn how to reject offers

Being assertive is not synonymous with being rude, because it is about defending our position in a firm but calm way. In addition, it is advisable to avoid entering into too many justifications if the person who offers you a drink is someone who does not know your situation.

What is assertiveness and how to be more assertive?
In this article, you will learn why assertiveness is so important, what its limitations are and why not everyone can be assertive.

10. Participate in a support group

Support groups allow you to bring together different people who are going through similar experiences, such as alcohol addiction. In this type of group you will have the opportunity to share your experiences and feelings, as well as your strategies to face the situation, as they can be of help to others.

This therapeutic tool is very interesting, since there is a reciprocal interaction that allows all members to learn from everyone. Going through a recovery process can be very difficult if it is done in solitude, so interacting with people who live in the same situation can be very comforting.

Although they have usually been carried out in person, new technologies have also allowed the creation of forums and portals in which those affected exchange their experiences naturally, often from different parts of the world. Ask your psychologist this possibility and start taking steps to start a healthy and orderly life.

I hope you enjoyed this article, I will be very proud if you can share your experiences with us in the comments section. 😇

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Disclaimer: This article is purely informative, I have no authority to make a diagnosis or recommend treatment. I invite you to visit a psychologist to treat your particular case.