So, you want to be a mindful drinker? That’s awesome. There is so much that mindful drinking can do for you, from improving your physical and mental health to helping you avoid those nasty hangovers. However, some things are easier said than done. Starting on the path to becoming a mindful drinker isn’t always easy.
This difficulty is why you should avail yourself of guides and resources to help you on your journey.
That’s where this article comes in. We bring you a guide on being a more mindful drinker, including tips and a discussion on why you should do it.
What is a Mindful Drinker?
Changing your attitude toward drinking is possible. Thinking about how you drink can help you become aware of how you are affected, so you can make an informed decision about whether that is acceptable to you or not. As long as you control your drinking habits, you have that little breathing room to do so.
Mindful drinking involves moderation for many people. It might be going without alcohol for a week, doing a sober sprint, or abstaining altogether. Motives also vary. You may be trying to slim down or be more fit, want to save money, keep your mind sharp, or simply don’t feel like drinking today.
How Can I Practice Mindful Drinking?
Become a mindful drinker by paying attention. Consider noting where and when you drink, who you drink with, and if you drink alone. Are there certain places or times you drink more than you want?
Furthermore, you may notice that drinking affects your mood and interaction with the world around you. Can drinking help you cope better with life? Does drinking help you feel more secure in social situations? Can it help you relax? You can better understand the role alcohol plays in your life if you pay attention to these details.
Understanding why you want to change may also help you. What is the impact of drinking on your family and relationships? How does drinking affect your career? What about your health? Discover why you want to change by observing what is going on. Oftentimes it’s not just about avoiding a hangover. Using an app to quit drinking or just cut back on drinking is a great way to kickstart your mindfulness journey.
There’s power in groups
Everyone else seems to be drinking, don’t they? Actually, no. You realize just how many people don’t drink when you start looking around. You might see the pregnant friend, the health-conscious friend, the Muslim friend, or the hangover-suffering friend who drank too much last night. Find out who they are and join them. Having your own crowd can be very helpful if you’re overwhelmed by a crowd of people drinking alcohol.
Fake it if needed
There are times when you don’t want to have another argument about why you aren’t drinking a “real” drink. Stay away from the spotlight. Follow these suggestions:
Establish a regular relationship with the bartenders. They’d be happy to prepare a mocktail for you, and you’d be surprised at how good they can be. Many times even better than the “real thing.”
Topping off each round with lemonade or soda is a great idea.
Do you have any doubts about whether the pub you’re planning to visit will have something you’ll enjoy? Enjoy a night of bubbly water by bringing along a bottle of your favorite cordial.
Keep your cool
Stay strong at the bar, and be careful not to default to “the usual.” Give yourself plenty of time. Remain focused. Discuss what you want to drink with the bartenders. You will find that many of them will be delighted to create a mocktail for you.
Many people never drink, and some reduce their consumption (about one in five). That leaves you with a few minutes to decide what to get.
Keep your stance
Write down your decision, then practice repeating it aloud. You might say, “I’ve decided not to drink tonight because I want to save myself for the weekend.”
Turn the tables on your friends if they try to intimidate you into drinking. Ask them a question instead. Tell me about your day. Do they have a favorite Facebook cat meme? Change the subject to anything else you like.
Choosing the best option for yourself doesn’t require anyone’s approval. Your choices are your own.
Think about your mood before acting
When you’re happy, you can drink a lot. How about when you’re lonely, exhausted, and emotional? As we all know, that’s not a great idea. Try confronting your problems instead of letting them fester. Facing these issues will benefit you in the long run.
Think about ‘HALT’: am I Hungry? Angry? Lonely? Tired? Thirsty? If you are any of these things, address them first, rather than hiding them with a drink. Listen to what your body needs.
Why Should I Be Mindful About My Drinking?
As we’ve discussed before, knowing how is only half the battle. You also need to know why you are doing something. This applies to mindful drinking as well.
Mindful drinking comes with many benefits for your health. Some of these include:
Weight management: Maintaining a healthy weight is difficult when you overindulge in alcohol. Even a slight reduction can significantly impact an average calorie count of 125 per drink.
Healthier skin: If you want to have glowing skin, you can spend a fortune on a skincare program recommended by your favorite Instagram blogger, or you can limit your alcohol consumption. Alcohol can dehydrate your skin, so be careful! We recommend trying it and seeing if it helps.
Less anxiety: Your sleep quality and anxiety levels can be improved with a 30% reduction in alcohol consumption over 30 days (as achieved by Sunnyside members). Physiological abnormalities caused by excessive alcohol use can exacerbate anxiety in stressful situations.
Sleep improvement: Excessive alcohol consumption can alter sleep patterns, causing you to wake up fatigued and unrested. Researchers have found that reducing alcohol consumption from high to moderate or low levels improves sleep quality.
Mindful drinking is about knowing yourself better, understanding why you drink, and how it affects you. You don’t have to stop drinking completely, but you must consider your relationship with alcohol. Even if you don’t cut back, paying more attention to how you engage with booze is always a good idea.
Be present, and enjoy your moment. A life without thinking and introspection isn’t a completely fulfilled one.