So Dry January is done and dusted, it hasn't been all that hard (apart from Jan 1st when I was super hungover) which has lessened the sense of achievement but it still feels good mentally and physically to have completed this little challenge.
Funny how doing less can seem like so much more.
If I rewind to two or three months back I was tired, felt ill for half the week as if I were running on half-steam. As sleep would suffer I would vape more and drink strong coffee to perk up, both stimulants dehydrating the body. Tired and dehydrated you don't necessarily make the greatest of food choices and begin to take up more cubic space. With this unwanted expansion you like yourself a little less and want to leave the house less meaning you crave the company of others and that feeling from being in a social environment more and where better to get that social kick than down a bar, so you go out and drink, waking the next morning to peel your split tongue from the bone dry roof of your mouth and start up the weekly pattern all over: drink -> hangover -> vape -> french filter coffee to excess -> bad sleep -> bad food, rinse and repeat.
Breaking that cycle has been a gift that's slowly unwrapped itself over 31 days. It might have sounded dramatic to describe the weekly pattern above, but it really was like that alot of the time and I'll bet it is the same for thousands of other people.
This January I've gone to the gym more, been out running with an old running buddy more. I've been out to several co-working meetups and been on the lookout for more adventurous stuff in 2017. I've definitely made more plans from booking the Bristol 10k, getting tickets to an underground music performance held underneath the cities main train station to booking Dublin flights for St Patricks and tickets to a VW camper van music festival in May.
Me and the girlie both undertook Dry January and neither of us felt the urge to drink even when out dining in an established 'bar & kitchen' or at the everyman cinema on Whiteladies where it is practically obligatory to drink while lounging on their comfy seating. On one dreary Saturday evening we went out to a late closing bakery for a really nice pizza, the kind you'd want to have with wine, but even though others around us were drinking we felt no real urge. It wasn't some self righteous smugness that drove us to abstain, just a total absence of wanting. I must say that was unexpected but the best outcome possible, where drink has no hold on yourself and others around you, after all drink should enhance your life not become it.
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