When I quit drinking, I expected to keep myself out of trouble and maybe enjoy better overall health. I liked not having those dreadful hangovers, not worrying about getting stopped for a DUI, and not feeling guilty. However, since becoming sober, I have experienced a lot of unexpected benefits. There have been so many, in fact, that I chose my top five to share.
1. I Think Before I React
I can feel something without having that automatic knee-jerk reaction that led me to pick up a bottle and drown my problems in it. I can even go through an uncomfortable situation without stopping at the nearest liquor store. There is a freedom in that; I am no longer enslaved to alcohol. Being able to separate any pain from automatically drowning it out has changed so many situations from negative to positive.
- I am no longer full of guilt and shame.
- My relationships are healthier and stronger.
- I have kept the same job for over a year, without getting written up or fired because of my attitude.
- I can handle confrontation and even criticism with aplomb.
- I can be around others who may be having a bad day without taking it personally.
2. I Have So Much More Time
I spent so much time either drinking or making sure I had enough alcohol that I had no idea just how much I was missing out on. I lived from one drink to the next, and everything that happened in between was nothing more than putting up with not being able to drink. It consumed all of my free time. In fact, I think I spent more time organizing my life around it than I did actually drinking it. Now that I am sober:
- I participate in all sorts of activities that I never had time for before.
- Sober family and friends have put me back on the guest list for holidays and get togethers.
- I no longer spend any time nursing a hangover.
- I started working out and have made new friends at the gym.
3. I Have More Money
Between planning, drinking, and recovering, I spent more money than I could afford. I simply had no idea how it all added up until I got sober. One evening out included the cost of drinks, tips, cab fare, late night food cravings, and a never ending supply of aspirin. Now that I am not spending all that money on booze, I:
- Moved into a nicer apartment
- Updated my wardrobe
- Go to the movies
- Adopted a cat from my local animal shelter
4. I Enjoy Going to AA
Before I went to my first meeting, I thought it was like what you see on TV where a bunch of depressed people get together and share their transgressions. Instead, I enjoy both giving and getting the support we all need. Every time I leave a meeting, I am grateful for my sobriety and know that I have the strength to live my life without alcohol. Plus, there are all sorts of outings like:
- Trips to the beach
- House Crawls (instead of pub crawls) Each house on the list serves one course of a meal.
5. I Look And Feel Younger
Cutting out all those toxins and calories made a real difference in a very short period of time. As a result:
- I like who I see in the mirror.
- I have so much more energy.
- I receive compliments from family and friends.
The most important benefit is that I count my blessings now, grateful that I have blessings to count.
The Anaheim Lighthouse is a modern and effective addiction treatment center in Southern California. To talk to us about treatment options at our affordable drug and alcohol rehab that fit your needs or those of your loved one who needs help, call (844) 494-4939.