I received this question from a reader and thought it would be a good one to address today.
“I’m good until Friday/weekend. Then I’ll talk myself into having a glass, which leads to most of the bottle. 🙁 Question – Surviving the weekend booze free?”
Tips on how to rock the weekend sober
If you’re taking an intentional break from alcohol but are worried about when the weekend comes, I’ve got some amazing tips for you on how to rock the weekend sober. As in alcohol free.
I’m pretty sure you’ll become a fan of enjoying the weekend sober, especially when you wake up on Saturday and Sunday gloriously hangover free.
Four keys to staying alcohol free over the weekend
I believe there are a few factors that go into play when it comes to surviving the weekend and staying alcohol free.
As you know, alcohol is EVERYWHERE – from the tailgate to the birthday party and from the dinner date to the backyard BBQ. And not only is alcohol everywhere, but it’s pretty much expected that you should drink to enjoy any event tied to the weekend. It’s just engrained in our society. That’s why, it’s important to be prepared. You’ll need to prepare not only what you will plan to drink but also what you will plan to say and do so you don’t get caught off guard.
Practice ordering a few drinks ahead of time
For example, “I’ll have a soda water, please!” If they don’t have that, then plan to order a lemonade or ask for an iced tea. If you’re hosting or heading to a party, perhaps bring ingredients for a fun soft cocktail!
- You’ll also need to be prepared to respond to any questions you’ll receive from friends or family who are used to see you drinking. Have a few responses on hand, such as:
- No thanks, I’m not drinking tonight! I’m taking a break from alcohol.
- No, not for me tonight. Alcohol has been messing up my sleep lately and giving me anxiety so I’m not drinking right now.
- No thanks.
EDITOR’S NOTE: One of my biggest hangups with socializing during the first few weeks of sobriety was actually telling people. And honestly, so many people responded with grace and support (and oftentimes verbally expressing their desire to cut back).
I’m a huge fan of visualization. The first time I saw someone do this was Lindsay Vonn at the top of a ski run. She literally closed her eyes and visualized the entire course beforehand. It’s something athletes do to imagine success over and over again. And it has personally worked for me in my personal life.
- Before attending an event or starting the weekend from the comforts of home, set aside time each morning to fully visualize enjoying it without alcohol.
- Get really specific! Imagine where you are, who you’re with and create a picture where you see yourself laughing, having the time of your life and easily saying “no thanks!” to a glass of champagne handed to you – or confidently ordering a soda water at the bar.
- Believe you can, decide you can and visualize your success.
Create a Distraction
The weekend isn’t a time to feel like you’re missing out. It’s an opportunity to choose something different for your life. Experience a new normal. Have different conversations. Get outside of your comfort zone. You could certainly do the same thing this weekend and just remove the alcohol. But how about trying something new?
- Schedule a hike or a fitness class that you’ve wanted to try.
- Find a new coffee drink or dinner recipe that is a little complicated and test it out.
- Make some new alcohol free cocktails.
- Visualize success (see above!) and relish in the energy and freedom you now have just by the power of your own choices.
Figure Out What Motivates You
Are you someone who loves a gold star? Are you motivated by the carrot or the stick? Figure out what really, really helps you achieve goals and apply it to this.
For example, if you were to take the money that you would have spent on drinks and use it to buy something special Monday morning, would that keep you motivated? Or would you love to share with your husband on Sunday night that you achieved your goal of not drinking? What about committing to donate $500 to a charity if you slip up? Would that prevent you from drinking? Think back to the last time you crushed a goal and work through why exactly you stuck with it – and then use it to your advantage when heading into the weekend.
O.K. So are you inspired? Get ready to challenge yourself to change for the better!