EP 92: Reader Question – Should I Count Alcohol Free Days?

Is it better to keep track of our alcohol free days or just to not think about it? Annie answers this question that we all have asked ourselves by describing her own personal experiences as well as providing some insightful information about the differences in each of our journeys.

Episode Links:
Better Than Before by Gretchen Rubin


Download EP:92 Transcript

To Count or Not To Count?

I get many questions about tracking alcohol free days. Is it or is it not a good idea to count off the days one lives without alcohol and why?

My Experience

First, I’ll answer about myself. I quit drinking and was completely euphoric about it. It was like this fog had lifted. My entire mind shift had changed. I just knew I never really wanted to drink again. I was really confident in the decision, and I know that date. That was December 15th of 2013. Then, a few months later, I wasn’t really believing anymore. I was so bombarded will all my friends saying that, “What are you doing? Why did you quit? You didn’t have a problem. What’s happening?”

Alcohol Free Days Experiment

I decided to do an experiment that I write about in my book. That was I film myself, by myself, no stimulation, so I could tell it was what the alcohol really felt like if I was really missing out with alcohol. I filmed myself, and I got drunk by myself in a room and watched the videos the next day.

The Video

That was pretty horrific. It was embarrassing. It was not somebody I ever wanted to be again. I didn’t really enjoy it without the socialization, without being with friends, without even watching TV. Drinking wasn’t all that great. It just made me feel not present. It made me feel like the room was coming in around me. My vision was getting a little fuzzier. My thoughts were getting fuzzier. When I documented it, as of that moment, I realized I just don’t need this. It was so awesome in a way, because it was so much good proof.

Counting Alcohol Free Days

Anyway, I don’t know the date of that, and I could look back at the video. I certainly have them, and I could know the day, but from that point forward I didn’t count any days. To be honest, I wasn’t counting any alcohol free days before that. That was because it was such a profound shift in my consciousness that I just knew. I wanted alcohol to be small and irrelevant. I don’t count the days since I’ve stopped or started a lot of things, and I didn’t want that counting to be something that was always reminding me of drinking because, frankly, I didn’t want to think about drinking anymore.

You Do You

That being said, that’s not necessarily the right choice for everybody, and I think that what one of the beautiful things about this entire journey, and even just watching this video right now, is you are on a quest for self-improvement and self-knowledge. So many studies, scientific research studies, say that when you start to know yourself and start to understand yourself and your behaviors and what triggers you and what delights you, et cetera, you have such a better chance of living a happy and fulfilled life. That link between knowing yourself and taking the time to dive into yourself and happiness is really profound.

Keep Listening

Tune into the complete podcast to hear everything Annie has to share on counting alcohol free days – or not!

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Special music thank you to the Kevin MacLeod Funkorama (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

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