COVID. The mere word conjures up so many reactions in all of us. Fear. Anger. Grief. The range of emotions stretches as long as the pandemic has. Many also share another common reaction – lockdown drinking. When all normalcy has left, so many have turned to the one constant we can count on – alcohol. Now another fear has emerged – I’m Drinking Too Much During Covid!
Nothing like this has ever happened before in our lives. The reaction for so many has been the same regardless of age, location, or gender – lockdown drinking. We drink because we’re stressed, we’re lonely, we’re bored, or we just want to be numb and not feel. What felt normal in March now has you thinking – I’m drinking too much during Covid!
Drinking Too Much During Covid
Now you’re wondering – What do I do? How do we handle this? How do we get a handle on drinking too much during Covid when we have no idea when all this will end? Where is the freaking manual on how to do life during a pandemic? (Amazingly, no one has written to me suggesting I write a book on that!)
Give Yourself Grace
Have grace and compassion for yourself. Compassion led change, especially self-compassion, is more effective than any other kind of change. We can only beat ourselves up into changing for a certain amount of time. Then it just stops working.
We have to lead with grace and we have to lead with compassion. Listen to the words you’re saying in your head. This time is hard and negative enough. Talking down to yourself because you’re drinking too much will not improve the situation in any way. A compassion and grace led approach means being aware of your self-talk and not talking to yourself in a way that you wouldn’t talk to a stranger or a child. You deserve to be treated kindly.
Lockdown drinking isn’t a personal failure. It’s a response to a traumatic event. You are reacting and coping in the same way as many others. Stop beating yourself up about it.
Worried you’re drinking too much during Covid?
Our guide can provide you with 6 tips for taking a break from booze. Download it here!
Lay Down Your Weapons
You can take ownership of drinking too much during Covid. Taking ownership restores the power back to you. Yes, you made the choice to drink. Once you take ownership, move on. Put down your weapons of shame and blame. They will not move you forward to stop drinking too much during Covid. When you play the shame and blame game you remain the victim which leaves you powerless. You need power right now so lay the weapons down.
Use Your Power
Now that you’ve put down your weapons, use your reclaimed power. You want to stop drinking too much during Covid. What have you learned from this? How can you use that to drink less or stop drinking? We learn not by doing things right all the time but by making mistakes and making them often. So, what do you know does not work for you now? Did alcohol really help as a coping mechanism? What are your triggers? What do you need to work on?
When we stop the worrying, blame, shame, and regret game we can move into action. The great thing is that once you realize you’re drinking too much, you can take the steps to rectify it. We can’t change the fact that there’s a lockdown. Drinking in response to it though – we can change that.
Take action and give yourself something you can feel empowered about and in control of during this time when nothing feels like it is within our control.