If you’ve perused The Audley Chronicle of late, you’ll know that I recently set myself the target of going sober for a year (whilst in the UK).
There were a variety of reasons for the decision (scroll down to the next post should you wish to hear them – well, read them), and as the month has progressed – and I’ve started to experience a sober life – they seem to have become ever the more valid.
Life without alcohol has been eye opening so far. Quite literally, in fact. My eyes, no longer supporting the après booze puff/sag, have become bigger. I haven’t woken up and realised that I didn’t remove my make-up the night before. So there have been no mascara conjunctivitis episodes, either.
That’s just the eyeballs. Let’s move on, because there are many more benefits of life on the wagon that I wish to share with you. The biggest plus I’ve noticed, which I didn’t anticipate feeling, is a sense of relief.
It sounds odd, but it is such a calming feeling knowing that you won’t be hungover. Knowing that you’re not going to wake up and feel unwell in the foreseeable future. On reflection, it does seem quite odd that we voluntarily make ourselves feel ill at least once a week.
And by feeling 100% 100% of the time, you can achieve so much more. So far this January, I have:
- Formed a partnership with one of the biggest magazine distributors within the UK
- Been interviewed by MagCulture
- Found – and moved into – a new office
- Done the cover interview for issue 8 of Blogosphere
- Sorted out a cash flow for 2016
- Done tax return
- Been approached by newsagent in Amsterdam to stock Blogosphere
- Put out a job spec for an editorial assistant
- Got 164 pages of content in for the March issue of Blogosphere (editing starts next week)
- Attended a press event and secured new advertising contacts
- Appointed two new editors – and created two new sections – to Blogosphere
- Worked hard – and effectively – every day
Realised that the two things in life, which make time pass rapidly for me are writing and reading. Writing I’d kind of worked out before, but realising I felt that way about reading was an epiphany. And one that (as you’ll see) I’ve acted upon.
- Gone on 5 runs
- Attended 4 yoga sessions
- Had 1 tennis lesson
- Played in 1 tennis match
- Joined a tennis league
- Read 3 books: Room, Things We Have in Common & Talk Like Ted
And I have not:
- Taken any painkillers
- Embarrassed myself
I also haven’t been a hermit and avoided social situations. I went to a friend’s birthday party in a crypt in Brixton, have been out for numerous suppers, attended my grandfather’s 90th birthday lunch (free-flowing nice wine) and went to a – perhaps the biggest test, or what I thought would be the biggest test – Sunday lunch, which was labelled in its invitation as a ‘boozy affair’ with 54 people.
I was put onto a table with a group of people I’d never met, which though doesn’t push me hideously out of my comfort zone, is a situation in which I’d be accustomed to drinking to help the conversation flow.
It turns out that you don’t really need the booze. It’s not the alcohol that makes the difference; it’s the amount of time you’re sitting there. This is revolutionary, I know. If you sit in someone’s company for 15 minutes or so, you automatically become more comfortable and at ease. You get used to them, the situation, where you’re sitting. You really don’t need that glass of wine.
So there’s the update. Oh, wait! There’s the sleep. It is SO much better. Real unadulterated sleep! No blackouts, no 3am wake-ups, no naked wanderings of my flat, no nocturnal quests for water. My sleep is now deep and undisturbed, and I wake up in the morning feeling truly rested and positive, nay excited about the day ahead.
Right, I think that is really it. Day 21. Three weeks’ sober.
I hope you didn’t find this post too nauseating (FYI not feeling nauseous is ACE) or preachy. But this no drinking resolution has already had such a positive impact that I feel duty bound to report it!
See you for the next sober update soon.