empty wine bottles

Life after a boozy lockdown

Did you have a boozy lockdown?

As we emerge from the grips that Covid19 had on the nation, and slowly start heading back into work, shops, pubs and restaurants, albeit in a new strange kind of way, the news reports and statistics show there has been an overreliance on people using alcohol to cope with the effects that the virus was causing all around us.

 

wine bottles

In our society, culture and through the marketing we see from alcohol companies, we have been conditioned to believe that drinking is what you do to celebrate and it’s also what you do when you want to relieve feelings of stress, anxiety, boredom and loneliness.

We’ve been faced with challenges that a majority of the country will have never faced before, homeschooling, working from home, isolation, not seeing friends, family or loved ones and sadly losing people close to us and not being able say a proper goodbye.

Anxiety & panic

You only had to watch the news to be put in a state of high anxiety and panic. I stopped my 11 year old daughter from watching it because of the effect it was having on her mental health.

Watching the numbers rise each day, knowing they were people’s lives, and non-stop reporting on everything that wasn’t going well, induced a level of fear that felt like we were fighting for survival.

With everything that’s been happening there’s been a lot of negative emotions that people have had to deal with on a daily basis and alcohol tends to become the go to aid.

This is even unconsciously confirmed in the TV shows that we watch. I saw an episode of Emmerdale with Sam Dingle and his partner Lydia, performing a specially socially distanced episode depicting life in lockdown.

On one of the mornings he woke up on the sofa and had a tower of empty beer cans in front of him as he struggled to cope with what was happening. I’m sure ITV were trying to portray what the country was experiencing but it also conditions us to believe drinking is a way to cope during lockdown.

The Alcohol Escape Plan

Alcohol is an escape button, a fast way to relieve those unwanted feelings and a reward for surviving the day.

The trouble is that it is also highly addictive, pleasurable to the brain and results in creating higher levels of anxiety, which means alcohol then becomes the problem and the solution.

Lockdown will have created many new routines in our daily lives and if alcohol became integrated into them as a way to unwind, relax or to cope with the stresses and strains of life then it has the potential to become an unwelcome and unhealthy habit.

There’s that old saying ‘habits are easy to form and not so easy to break’, and it’s especially true with alcohol.

So if you find that you have been drinking more during lockdown than you would have liked or are finding it a challenge to take a break from reaching for a beer or glass of wine of at night to break up the day, then I have 4 simple steps that you can follow to help cut back and take control of your drinking;

  1. Write down what you are going to drink 24 hours in advance
  2. Only drink what you said you would
  3. Allow the desire for another drink to be there without acting on it
  4. Repeat

When you stick to the plan you have committed to, you are teaching your brain that you are in control of your drinking, not the other way around.

More Support

When writing your drinks in advance, remember that the government’s alcohol guidelines for safe drinking are no more than 14 units per week. That’s around 6 pints of beer or 6 medium glasses of wine a week.

If you would like to learn more about alcohol and the role it has in your life, then you can sign up for The Alcohol ReThink Project which is a 30 email series with one email, one topic, one project, one quote and one video a day to help you shift your mindset around drinking. Register here.

About Patrick

Patrick Fox is a certified Life Coach and Stop Drinking Expert. He works with parents to stop drinking alcohol so they can have stronger relationships with their children. Stopping drinking is easier than you think, anyone can do it and Patrick can help you.

You can sign up for a 12 week coaching program, where Patrick will help you to unlearn your desire for alcohol and to show up as the role model for your children that you wish to be. You can book a free one hour consultation to see how you could both work together. https://www.patrickjfox.com/consultation

You can also find him on:
Instagram @thesoberlifecoach

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/patrickjamesfox/

Becoming Alcohol Free (Private FB group) https://www.facebook.com/groups/becomingalcoholfree

 

 

Sharing is caring! Facebooktwitterlinkedinmail
About The Author

Sharon Critchlow

Sharon Critchlow is a Wellbeing Advocate, speaker and facilitator at Discover Your Bounce for Business. Passionate about people being the best they can be she is a Time To Change Champion for mental health and holds a Masters level qualification in strategic coaching for performance. Sharon is a qualified accountant and has 20 years experience in senior leadership roles in the financial services sector. www.discoveryourbounce.com www.time-to-change.org.uk