Do Whatever it Takes to Stop Drinking

I have been thinking about this expression and what it means to me. What do I have to do to stop drinking forever? What does ‘whatever it takes’ look like for me? What does it look like for you?

I am still figuring it out, but so far what I am doing seems to be working as far as keeping me off the booze in the short-term. But is it enough to sustain me comfortably in sobriety for years to come? Maybe, maybe not. It scares me that it is so easy to relapse and so difficult to tell if I am on the right path.

I think this is a big deal in recovery because you cannot just stop drinking and expect everything in your life to get better or change. I have been realizing that I need to slowly begin to work on building a new kind of life. A life that is not centered around alcohol in any way, shape or form. A life that is better, bigger, more beautiful and more whole. I need to let go of the past and who I used to be. This requires facing some fears and a whole lot of limiting beliefs that have been with me for a long time.

‘Whatever it takes’ is different for everyone. Some people need to go to AA meetings every day to stay sober, and that is 100% okay. Some people need to anonymously blog and tell nobody about their problem, and that’s okay too. Whatever works is whatever works is whatever works FOR YOU. Being honest with ourselves is so important, because only we know if we are doing enough at any given time.

Right now I believe I am doing enough. It is such a relief to know that there is more out there for me if I need it. AA- I’m talking to you. It seems that my daily routine of reading, reading, writing, talking, and reading some more is working. I mainly stay home. I hang out with my husband and son. I avoid social events that make me uncomfortable and talk to my drinking family on the phone less. I am setting boundaries that are difficult and uncomfortable but so, so necessary. That is okay because it is what I need to do to stay sober right now. It will change as I change. ‘Whatever it takes’ will look different as my sober time lengthens. It already looks different than it did on my first shaky day.

I need to challenge myself and get out of this comfort zone, though, if my sobriety is going to last forever. This much I am sure of.

So… what do you say? Let’s challenge ourselves to live bigger lives. To be our best selves. To worry less and pray more. To make goals and begin taking small steps to accomplish them. To do whatever it takes to be free.

We deserve all the good stuff that life has to offer.

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8 thoughts on “Do Whatever it Takes to Stop Drinking

  1. It all starts from the inside and moves outward. Keep growing, stretching, moving. Get right with ourselves, and we get right with our HP and the world…and then there is not stopping us πŸ™‚

    Great post.

    Blessings,
    Paul

  2. I’m just starting to feel freer, 88 days, I long for 188 and the feeling that will bring. Really good post Jen.Just like you I’ve done this without any outside help. I think about forever but I think about getting there one day at a time, I’m afraid to get too confident.

    • I long for more sober time too, but then I realize that I don’t want to wish my life away. A catch 22! I am glad you are starting to feel more free. I am also really afraid to feel over-confident. I have felt that way before (about smoking) then relapsed and had my confidence shattered. A lessen learned for sobriety, perhaps? One day at a time is the best mantra sometimes. πŸ™‚

  3. I wanted to comment on this last night, but time got away from me. I think we all have our own ways to find our forever sobriety. A big reason why AA is successful for so many people is because it encourages self-reflection to find personal growth. The truth is that there are reasons we drink that are clear and in our face, but there are also hidden reasons that are much less obvious. I hope and believe that long-term success will come not from willpower and white-knuckling it, but because of personal growth. We can all take whatever path gets us to that growth. You are doing an amazing job, so what you are doing is working. Just think in AA you get 1 sponsor to guide you to change and grow. Here you get countless people that share stories, offer support, and help guide you through the dark hours. This may be anonymous, but that does not mean it is impersonal. Keep doing what works! You are an amazing person going through amazing changes!! – Heather

    • Thanks Heather! You are right, there is a lot of support to be found right here! What you wrote about the hidden reasons for drinking is interesting to me lately. I think I am just noticing the tip of the iceberg for a few of them. My awareness has definitely grown in the past few months, as has yours! I am staying positive as much as I can, but the fear is still there, and I hope it stays there to some extent. I need to remember how important it is for me to stay sober. I genuinely think it is a life or death matter for some, including myself. I always appreciate your comments. πŸ™‚

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