1. You will save a heap o’ cold hard cash. Not that anyone uses cash anymore - I mean, I rarely have cash in my wallet, it’s all tap this, tap that, PIN, swipe and away we go - BUT, there’ll be some extra fat in your piggy bank this month. I don’t know you, so I can’t take a guess at how much you guzzle on an average week, but let’s say you have a bottle of wine twice a week with friends for dinner, and half a dozen beers/ciders over the weekend. Again, all socially, all above board but that sounds like an average week, right? That’s around $20 a bottle of wine, and maybe $8 a beer/cider if it’s not in a can.
So that’s: $20 x 2 + $8 x 6 = $88 per week.
That’s about $350 this month that you will have saved by not drinking!
2. Your brain will begin to heal. Once you go alcohol free that ‘foggy’ feeling in your brain will, slowly but surely, go away. If you have been heavily drinking for many years, as many of us have, you may have forgotten that wonderful feeling of being able to think clearly and deeply. It will take a little bit of time but soon enough you’ll start to feel clear in your mind. This is because you’ve stopped actively destroying your brain cells - yay, can we get up and do a happy dance or what!
3. Your liver will begin to rejuvenate. is doesn’t seem like a sexy benefit, but your liver function is actually really important. Although this is an ‘inside’ bene t, the liver produces proteins that are important in blood clotting and is one of the organs that break down old or damaged blood cells. It plays a central role in all metabolic processes in the body, it breaks down fats to produce energy.
4. You don’t have to kid yourself or your friends anymore! No more sneaking around. I used to under estimate how many drinks I’d had, because the real number sounded bad, and I would always feel guilty about this. You too? Oh, glad it wasn’t just me. Well, you won’t have the drinkie guilt’s anymore, because you won’t need to downplay how many soda-streams
you’ve been through, will you?
5. You’re glowing and gorgeous. Your skin will improve. Redness will disappear, dark circles will lift and the whites will make your eyes pop. Damn girl, you’re going to look good. Damn boy, you’ll be looking ne! Drinking less alcohol will have a positive impact on your appearance. And who doesn’t want to look better!?! Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it can make you pee more and cause you to become dehydrated. You know the ‘10pm rule’? I used to try not to go to the bathroom on a night out until after 10pm, because if one were to ‘break the seal’ before 10pm, it felt like you would need to go to the bathroom all the night long. Don’t know why that was, probably an urban myth; but a universal truth to all the clubbers nonetheless. In short, alcohol dehydrates you and depletes you of nutrients, which shows up on your face. Watch this space... rather, watch your face!
6. You sleep like a baby. Because your body isn’t using all its function to rid itself of the poison you guzzled in the lead up to nigh-nighs, you will sleep better, and better and better. You’re welcome.
7. You will experience the sheer joy of waking up sober. is feeling is surprisingly addictive, and will overshadow your desire to stay out, because waking up fresh, energized and with a smile, is the best.
8. Dem feels. You just feel better. It only takes a couple of days and you feel better about yourself, about life in general - damn, you just feel good! You’ll feel like doing high kicks and handstands. Your natural energy will return and you’ll be peachy keen, and there ain’t nothing you can do about it. Except cartwheel through the lounge room and shock the kids!
9. Your hair and nails with strengthen. I know the boys are like, ‘great, that’s awesome Maz, I really want long luscious locks and beautifully manicured tips’, but this is a plus for both men and women. Your hair and nail strength is a direct reflection of what’s going on internally. As your immune system builds, so does the strength in your hair and nails. And hey, they are called MANicures for a reason - ain’t no shame in a man who grooms. Just saying.
10. Look at all this free time you have. You used to spend a lot of time just hanging out at a bar talking nonsense, but these days you’ll finally have some extra time to learn a language, start cross stitching, take up a social sport, study that course you’ve always talked about, read a book... or write a book!
11. You might see dead people. Well, hopefully not, but your senses will heighten. is s is a fact. A fresh soda water with some lime in it will feel like angel tears on your tongue. You’ll literally be able to stop and smell the roses, think clearer, hear your kids whispering in the next room, and get your touchy feely on – oh yeah! Go you.
12. Wait, is it compliments week? It sure is. People will tell you how good you look. Family, friends, coworkers, they’ll all notice it and they’ll feel compelled to tell you that you look great. And when they ask what you’re doing differently, it’s up to you how you respond. You can tell them you’ve living alcohol free for a month, or you can say you’ve joined a secret fitness cult, up to you.
13. You’ll be super aware of things around you. It’s like you’ll have this new way of seeing things, you’ll notice the birds singing, the sun on your face, how angry everyone else is, how majestic parts of our world can be. You will be more aware, awake and conscious of your world.
14. New bestie! You’ll start to like yourself more. You might not have thought about it much, but would you want to hang out with you? Well you will now, because you are an enlightened, new being with a life ahead of you that is for living, not wasting. With less crappy choices to feel bad about, you’ll start to like yourself again.
15. You’re not just a goal setter, you are a goal doer. Setting a personal goal to live alcohol free for 31 days is a big ask, and completing that task puts you in the same league as Bradley Cooper, Jenny from e Block, Chris Martin from Coldplay, Eminem from 8 Mile and Blake Lively, who is married to Ryan Reynolds (not that that’s directly related to her not drinking, but she did score Hollywood’s biggest heartthrob). Being able to set a goal, and stay true to it, empowers you.
16. Mr. and Mrs. Optimism. As you begin to feel stronger and healthier, you will have a renewed sense of optimism for the days ahead of you. You’ll be able to see a world filled with endless possibilities, and that feels amazing.
17. You’ll see your friendships for what they represent and perhaps be emboldened do some friendship-garden pruning, which is perfect. If you want to fly with the eagles, surround yourself with eagles.
18. Hello Einstein. You’ll feel like a creative genius. It’s like someone switched on your brain, like an actual lightbulb flicked on inside your head. Maybe at some stage it flickered on and then dimmed; but after a while of living alcohol free, your brain becomes filled with dreams, plans and things you’ve never thought about before. No more coming up with great ideas that end up in the gutter with your evening.
19. Did you just become a scientist? Probably not, unless you are a scientist; in which case, can you please explain why we still tie up our shoes with shoelaces? Anyway, whether you are or aren’t - a scientist - you’ll feel like experimenting, maybe in the bedroom, maybe other place too. You will want to try new things and you’ll feel more adventurous. You might walk when it rains rather than run, you might order something totally new from a menu, book a spontaneous holiday to Japan. e adventurous side of you has always been there, you are just giving him or her permission to shine.
“I'm goanna give myself permission to shine I'm gonna shine so brightGonna make every head want to turn.”
20. You won’t do any stupid things (most likely - or if you do, you’ll at least be 100 percent aware that you are doing a stupid thing).
21. You will become a nicer human and your future self will thank you for it - as will your barista - as will many other people you meet along the way.
22. You will smell better. No more next day wreak of booze, you smell as fresh as a flower in a flower pot.
23. e C-bomb. By not drinking from the bottle, you’ll reduce your risk of cancer by a decent percentage. ‘risk varies for each type of cancer and is influenced by how much you are drinking ... Heavy drinkers can have as much as a 10- 15 times higher risk of developing cancers than those who do not drink. Risk begins to increase after just 1 drink a day for women or 2 for men.’ - OncoLink.org, the first cancer information website available to the public cites. Consistent exposure to alcohol is proven to be a leading cause of many cancers, so I would say this is solid motivator. Avoiding the big C-bomb is a great reason to stop drinking for a bit. Note: Once you are aware of this fact however, you’ll always be aware. So, if you do start drinking like a madman again, and you know you are significantly increasing your chances of getting the C-bomb, you gotta sit with that choice. Sorry to burst your bubble.
24. Rather than being on the sauce, you will become the source. If you still go out with your friends - and you can - you will become a reliable source of the information you’re not-so-sober friends are blanking on; who said what, when they left where, and how they ended up there. Suddenly, your credibility is through the roof, and all you did was stay alcohol free. By default, you become everyone’s new best friend as you stop people from driving home drunk and remind them where their wallet is. You’re such a good friend. You’re guaranteed to be flooded with calls from friends you went out with the night before to help them make sense of their night. You are now a detective helping each friend piece together their embarrassing calamities from the last 12 hours.
25. No more hangovers. Bon voyage headaches. Au revoir queasy stomach. Goodbye regrets! No more trying to figure out what happened last night, no more 11am pizza binges, no more having to take four showers in one day, to wash away the sweat of a hangover. You’re o seizing the day instead – that’s cool!
26. Have you lost weight? Yes, you have. You aren’t guzzling empty calories on the weekend so you’re no longer storing them around your middle for a rainy day. Those who cut out alcohol can expect to lose on average 2kg-4kg over the course of one month without making any other changes. this is a significant amount, and can lead to improved self-esteem, improved energy levels, and reduce chronic disease risk factors such as high blood pressure. Pay attention to your face Cheryl, it’s changing. Two words my friend – weight loss.
27. You will start to see life through a new lens. e reason why no one wants to be the sober person in the room, is because the sober person can clearly and fairly see what moronic things drunk people do.
28. Not only will you begin seeing things differently, you’ll find you’ll also develop an overwhelming sense of empathy for others. As your brain becomes rewired and you can better assess your behaviors; you’ll feel more tolerant, you’ll become more patient, and less angry. And, as you start to process your emotions, and get to know yourself better, you will develop a bigger capacity for those around you. And all the kids cheered “Way to go Dad!!”
29. Increased mental focus. You are better able to focus on the job (or thought) at hand (or in your head). A far cry from suffering chronic double vision after too many shandy’s in the sun. Your ability to take up tasks will improve; your productive output will increase and you will be able to concentrate and be less flighty with your thoughts. You can see clearly now the rain has gone.
30. You are a Daft Punk song; ‘Work it harder, make it better, do it faster, makes us stronger.’
31. You’re A Unicorn. Your non-drinking status has transformed you into a unicorn, and every single person within earshot wants to come over and ask questions. Magical.