?and what it did to me.
Photo by Stefan Cosma on Unsplash
A few months ago I decided to drink no more alcohol anymore. Why? That is a question many people ask me. For sure: It?s quite unnormal for a young German Guy who lives in Germany. If I would be a woman everybody would ask: ?Are You pregnant??. But as a man, even if I have a little belly, this reason doesn?t fit. So after some questions, I tried to figure out why I don?t want to drink alcohol anymore. So here are my personal ten reasons, why I banned alcohol from my life. I don?t want to convert anyone. That is much too exhausting for me. I am not in the world to educate other people. But maybe my thoughts are valuable for one or the other. If not, at least I enjoyed writing.
1.) I want to live a life that I can endure soberly
Honestly, this is the main reason: I want to live a life that I can endure soberly. So many things are cool: But only with alcohol. For example: Being on a party that sucks totally. Boring people surround me. But hey: A glass of wine or some beers and everything is beautiful.All of a sudden, it?s not so bad here anymore. Wrong! It sucks. But you anesthetize yourself with some drugs. With the right drugs, you can have a great time everywhere. But I want to live a life, that I can endure soberly. I want to share my time with people, that gives me a good time. I?m not here on this planet to waste my time with nasty people at ugly places, that I can only endure with alcohol.
2.) I want to live long and not die of a heart attack
If I?m sincere: I want to live as long as possible. Alcohol is a fucking drug. You can tell yourself every day that alcohol tastes good and you only drink a beer because of its great taste (which I do not wish to deny). Maybe that?s your truth. But my reality is another One. There are different reasons why people drink alcohol: They need it as a social lubricant to loosen up, or they had a stressful day, so they want to chill with a cold beer in the evening. No matter what the reason is: I harm my health with alcohol. I don?t want to destroy my health anymore.
3.) Alcohol triggers my craving for cigarettes
Yeah, that sucks. I am not a smoker, but every time I drink alcohol, I want to smoke a cigarette. So it?s a win-win situation for me: If I don?t drink, I?m not keen on smoking.
4.) I want to live a life that doesn?t need a stress reliever
Sometimes, after a long day at work, I?d reward myself with a beer. It was a stressful day: now a cold beer would be perfect! But honestly: I don?t want to live a life that sucks and needs some drugs vom time to time from escaping it. I want to experience a living, that is a reward by itself. If I?m stressed these days, I change my life, and not my drugs. Work less, chill more. More exercise, sport, and good food. More sex. More fun. Better conversations. Better books. Life is easy. Why do we make it so hard?
5.) Good alcohol is expensive
I am not talking about standard beer or vodka. I prefer whiskey or a good wine. And Yes: A good drinking starts from 50 Euro per bottle. The money was not the reason to stop drinking but is now a reason not to start drinking again.
6.) I don?t want to drink and smoke in front of my kids
Parents are the most significant role models for their children. Even if your children will never admit it. They quickly adopt the behavior of their parents. How many children who grow up in smoking households also smoke? Very many. I am not an idiot and not naive: There will come a day when my child will be drunk for the first time, will smoke the first cigarette and the first joint. Children and teenagers have to make their own borderline experiences, like all of us when we were young (I sound like an old teacher, but I?m only 29 years young). But I don?t want to have to blame myself for that.
7.) I want to have a clear mind 24/7
I like to be in control. That is not always given with alcohol. Even after a beer, my brain doesn?t work as I need it. I?m not more creative either. Maybe it helps some people: Alcohol harms me more than it benefits me. I can?t think anymore and only talk shit when I?m drunk. I think that?s what most people do. But you don?t notice it until you?re the only sober person in drunken society.
8.) I do not want to have hangovers anymore
angovers feel very uncomfortable to me. So last year I had two terrible hangovers. I need three days to recover from a strong hangover fully. I mean: The party and the cocktails are sweet. But for me, it?s not worth feeling three days catastrophic. Sure you can drink alcohol at a party without having hangovers. But you can also visit a party without alcohol and hangovers.
What did it do to me?
The honest answer: After more than three months I do not need at all for alcohol and cigarettes. That?s an advantage. I do more sports and I pay more attention to my needs and my health. I am miles away from a dream body. I notice that from time to time I catch myself rewarding myself with other things. I eat more sweets (I hardly used to do that) and now I buy expensive lemonades and exotic drinks. There the 250 ml Cola may cost already times 3.50 euro in the beverage market. I started to drink more high-quality tea again. What many people don?t know: good Asian tea has a much higher variety of tastes than whiskey or wine. The flavor is only much more subtle.What am I still observing about myself? Are there also negative consequences since I no longer drink alcohol in any case. Crappy parties are now really crappy. Some people remain boring, even after the third Cherrycoke. I already have no desire for the Oktoberfest. Alcohol somehow has a sociable character. I can?t deny that. And if you don?t drink, you are denied many magical moments. And there were many of them in my life. But I decided to let these magical moments develop in sobriety from now on: At the seaside, fishing or surfing, on the roof terrace with my wife: Over a delicious glass of cherry coke. Whatever I observe: I am more efficient than ever before. That?s because I?ve become more mindful by not drinking alcohol. I pay more attention to my needs, take more breaks and can concentrate better. When my head is smoking, I go jogging, to the swimming pool or the gym. Or I meditate and practice autogenic training. Go for a walk in the forest.All in all, I feel better without alcohol. But I don?t want to commit myself. Maybe someday the day will come when I will drink another glass of beer. I will see it. Two years ago I did not drink alcohol for half a year. This time I wanted to write down my experiences. One last experience: In our society here in Germany you are eyed strangely when you don?t drink. You are directly suspected of being an alcoholic. This is obvious. But this says more about the people who think that than it does about me. People tend to see their problems in others, and peer pressure is a big problem ? but not for me. I enjoy taking the contrary view, and I like to do things differently. Besides, I have never been afraid that I don?t belong to anything or that I?m not a part of anything. That was never the case, although I am very special in some things. In Germany, it is normal to get drunk.
It is shown by the following quote, which comes from the Drug Commissioner of the Federal Government:
9.5 million people in Germany consume alcohol in a dangerous form. On average, ten liters of pure alcohol are consumed per capita each year. About 1.3 million people are considered to be dependent on alcohol. Only about 10 percent undergo therapy ? often much too late after 10 to 15 years of addiction. Every year around 20,000 people die in Germany from the direct and indirect consequences of their alcohol abuse. The economic costs amount to 26.7 billion euros, of which 7.4 billion are direct costs for the health system alone.
Numbers that, in my opinion, make you think.
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