How to Thrive Alcohol Free with Dupe Witherick

Episode 158 March 27, 2024 00:47:29
How to Thrive Alcohol Free with Dupe Witherick
Alcohol Tipping Point
How to Thrive Alcohol Free with Dupe Witherick

Mar 27 2024 | 00:47:29


Hosted By

Deb Masner

Show Notes

Today, I’ve got a special guest all the way from the UK—Dupe Witherick. She’s an accredited alcohol-free well-being and transformational coach, and she’s got some helpful insights for you. Dupe’s also the author of the book A Cocktail of Clarity and host of the podcast, Thrive Alcohol Free. I’ll be on her show soon, so stay tuned! ️ 

We chat about: 

Find Dupe: Website: Instagram: @thrivealcoholfree 

Finding Freedom Retreat in Bali hosted by Dupe: 

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Episode Transcript

[00:00:01] Speaker A: Welcome to the Alcohol Tipping Point podcast. I'm your host, Deb Maisner. I'm a registered nurse, health coach, and alcohol free badass. I have found that there's more than one way to address drinking. If you've ever asked yourself if drinking is taking more than it's giving, or if you've found that you're drinking more than usual, you may have reached your own alcohol tipping point. The alcohol tipping point is a podcast for you to find tips, tools, and thoughts to change your drinking. Whether you're ready to quit forever or a week, this is the place for you. You are not stuck and you can change. Let's get started. Well, hello everybody. Thanks so much for listening to this podcast. I want to invite you to the next alcoholiday day. This is a live dry group that I run every month. This will be, gosh, April, I think it will be my 34th dry month, my 34th alcoholiday that I have ran. It is just a great place for you to practice not drinking. And I call them alcoholiday because I really think that this process of giving up drinking, drinking less, whatever that looks like for you, is such a gift and it is so good for your health, your mental and your physical health. We'll thank you for it. But I think there aren't a lot of safe places, safe, non judgmental places for you to practice not drinking. So that is why I created the alcoholiday. I wanted to be able to give you some tools, some resources so that you can really practice not drinking and really see what it feels like to go days, weeks, a whole month without alcohol. In this group, the alcoholiday, we have twice a week meetings and you get daily content. You have a journal, you have a chat feed. You'll be with other people. But it's all very private. It's hosted in a private, secure platform, and it's just a great place for you. If you are looking to unwind this drinking habit, you can save 20% by using the code spring spring all caps. And you can go to my website, alcoholiday, to get your discount. And then if you've been in the group before, remember you are an alumni and you have a super discount. You can get that discount code by emailing me [email protected] and if you are struggling financially, please reach out to me. I want to help you out. I don't want that to be a barrier for you changing your drinking. I do try to make this month really affordable for you. It's less than $3 a day, but I do want to make sure that you know that there are options out there if you want to save a little extra money. All right, well, thank you. And without further ado, here is your next episode. Welcome to the Alcohol Tipping Point podcast. Today I have a guest all the way from the UK. Her name is Dupe Witherek, and she is an accredited alcohol free well being and transformational coach. She also is the author of the book A Cocktail of Clarity, and she's the host of her very own podcast, Thrive Alcohol Free. And I'm going to be on that show, too, so look for more collabs between me and dupe. So welcome to the show. Glad to have you here. [00:03:48] Speaker B: Thank you so much, Deb. So lovely to be here. [00:03:52] Speaker A: Well, can you tell us a little bit more just about yourself, obviously, from the UK, but I would love to hear more about you. [00:04:01] Speaker B: Yeah, sure. So, as you said, I'm an alcohol free wellbeing and transformational coach and podcast host, although you're also an author, and I have an online course as well. And I'll be running my first retreat in Bali this summer, so I'm really excited about that. But, yeah, and when I reflect on it, this is quite amazing, because I decided to stop drinking over three years ago. It was November 2020, and if you'd asked me probably four years ago, it was never something I was ever going to do. I was what you would call a normal drinker. Obviously, I'd been drinking since I was at university, mainly, and then went into the corporate world and there's the whole lifestyle around. I was in management consulting, so lots of client dinners and team events and conferences and things, which just meant that alcoholiday was just there and it wasn't really something you thought about, but you couldn't not network and you could not really go out without having a glass of wine or whatever it was that you would drink. And so I considered myself a normal drinker. Obviously, you had the odd night where you go mad and you have lots of fun, but on the whole, it wasn't anything excessive. And then a couple of years before, I stopped drinking or decided to take a break, and that was what I was doing. I was never going to stop forever take a break. I just found I wasn't really enjoying it, but enjoying alcohol. So I've got a nearly ten year old daughter. She'll be ten next week. And again, obviously I had a break when I was pregnant, but then as soon as I sort of finished that tea came you end up in this sort of mummy wine culture. And I was saying to you earlier, I had a group of friends and we would, as a treat, have girls nights and go out for a drink, or we would go to each other's houses and you'd a cup of tea or a glass of wine. Which one would you like? And that was just what society sort of ingrained in you. So there was no real thinking that you can ever stop or you would want to stop. But I wasn't enjoying it. So a couple of years before, I used to drink a lot of heavy red wines, and I just found I couldn't. I'd drink half a glass and it just didn't go down very well. So the thought of stopping drinking didn't even cross my mind at that point. I thought, well, I tell you what, I'll have lighter red wines. So instead of having the heavy red wines, I'll have the ones with a bit of a lower percentage, because that's obviously going to make a difference. And then I, again, wasn't enjoying that. So I thought, okay, I'll go on to white wines. And I'd never really been a white wine drinker, but again, I thought, well, it's slightly lighter, it's a bit better for you. I'll do that. And I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in March 2020. I summited March 2020. We went off about four years ago, two days ago, so I did that. That was an amazing experience. And I remember coming back from that or finishing that, thinking, wow, this is incredible. You do something like that and you are pretty much, wow, there's so much more to life. I'd love to do more of these types of things. I want to make more of an impact, I want to do more. But I didn't know what that more was. I didn't know what I wanted to do. But then, of course, I climbed a mountain, came down and the world changed, because a week later, we were all in lockdown and Covid hit. And, yeah, you can imagine, like everybody else globally, it was a bit of a shocking time. And so the thoughts of doing anything different and new just went away. And it was more of a survival, wasn't it, during 2020, no one really knowing what was happening, et cetera. But it got to October time and my church announced they were doing a 21 day give something up for 21 days. And so I thought, well, I'd found in the year, I'd been working really hard. I'd been on zooms from, like, seven till 07:00. A.m. Till 07:00 p.m. I hadn't really been out the house. I wasn't really looking after myself very much. And then I'd get to the end of the day and I'd be like, I deserve a glass of wine. And I was getting bored of that, so I thought, I'm just going to stop. And so I'll take a 21 day break. And yeah, the 21 days came and lots of things happened. And it's now three and a bit years, and I'm very grateful. And all the things that you described about me being a coach and writing a book and setting up podcasts, that's all happened in the past three and a bit years. So, yeah, it's been pretty incredible. [00:08:50] Speaker A: Wow, that is an incredible story. It's interesting because I had a lot of day ones and I took a lot of breaks and I never wanted to give it up, but I always knew it was a problem. And so I think it's good to hear other people's perspectives where it sounds like you were having some health concerns or just physical effects and changing it up and just recognizing like, oh, this isn't serving me anymore. And you just took a break and you kept going. That's amazing. [00:09:27] Speaker B: Yeah, I hadn't done it before. I had tried to take breaks before, so I tried to do lents and not drink for lent or not drink for dry January. I'd probably done that a few times, but nowhere. That never actually lasted. I'd probably get to a week and that would be it. And so I went into the 21 days not really half, not expecting to actually do the 21 days, but also thinking, well, I can do 21 days. Having climbed kilimanjaro, I've decided I can do anything. So I was pretty determined I'd do the 21 days, but after the 21 days, it was then going to be Christmas and new year. There was no way I was not drinking then. So it was more of a, I'll take the break and then I'll finish and then I'll go back to drinking, but I'll moderate or I'll do something. But I had a real sense this time that, and it had been probably coming up for a while during the year that by stopping drinking, it would change my life in some way. I kept getting this thing. It would set me free, and I didn't know free from what I would say. I had a pretty good life. I was enjoying myself. Obviously, it was 2020, so we were all a bit restricted, but in the general terms, there was nothing wrong. We'd go on holidays, we were enjoying life, I had a good job, blah, blah, blah. So I wasn't really sure what that really meant, but it kept coming back. And then the day before, I took a break and I hadn't drunk for a few days, but I thought, I will, as a last hurrah, I would have a glass of champagne just to say I've had a drink, and then go into this 21 days. Well, I poured a glass and had a couple of sips, maybe even a sip, and it just went down. It just didn't go down at all. My stomach started churning. I got this real sense that actually, okay, maybe there's something more here and I need to listen to it. I started on those 21 days. The first couple of weeks were pretty boring. Pretty sort of. I was on teas, coffees and water. Wasn't really going to bed very early, reading books, just to not feel tempted to drink. And I then got to about two weeks in and I stumbled across an article about an alcohol free champagne fizz. And I read it and I thought, this looks really familiar. I don't know why, but the person was raving about it, saying, it's the best they've ever tried. They were like a wine connoisseur who tried, obviously knew all the alcoholiday wines, but was reviewing this alcohol free and said, it's the best they've ever tried and it's wonderful, blah, blah, blah. And I suddenly thought, I'm sure I've got that in my cupboard. Then you might be thinking, hold on a minute, has she got an alcoholiday free bottle of wine in her cupboard? And that summer, someone had actually brought a bottle round and I'd remembered thinking, why are you bringing me this? Especially as they went on and drank my wine, my alcoholic wine, and I stuffed it in the cupboard. So I rummaged through the cupboard and there it was. It was like it was waiting for me. And I had a girly girls night that night. And so I poured a glass of that just to look like I was drinking, because I hadn't told anyone that I wasn't, and had a sip, thinking it would just be awful. But I thought, oh, this tastes quite nice. And then I had an epiphany. I was like, well, if I can drink something that tastes nice is like an adult drink, why would I drink something that doesn't make me feel good the next day and that I'm not really enjoying? And so that was really the start. And so then I started investigating what else was out there and discovered people were stopping drinking out of choice. I listened to a couple of TED talks that were talking about gray area drinking, Jolene Park's TEd talk, where she talked about gray area drinking. I never heard the concept of gray area drinking. And I just thought, wow. And then I sort of started looking around and realizing there was, like, a community of people who chosen to stop drinking and were having an amazing time and loving life. And that just didn't comprehend in my mind, because I'd always thought people that don't drink are boring. People that don't drink have obviously got a problem, have hit rock bottom all the rest of it, and it wasn't true. And so I joined a community, and I had a Zoom call. This was probably a few days before I was getting to the 21 days, and they somehow managed to convince me that I should keep going for a bit longer. And then I went from there and got through my first alcoholiday free Christmas and new year, and the rest is history. But along the way, opportunities started opening up. I started my coach training in the January, so a couple of months in because I realized that's something I'd been wanting to do but just hadn't had the courage or the thought to actually do it. So lots happened in the first sort of six months, I started running, and since then, I've done a marathon. I'm training for my second marathon, started doing yoga every night. And lots of things have changed. And so, yeah, it's been amazing. [00:14:48] Speaker A: That's wonderful. Excuse me. That's wonderful. And I like how you emphasize, like, it was a choice. Like, people are choosing to be alcohol free, because I think for a lot of people, it's like, oh, I have to be, or, oh, I can't drink anymore. When you make it, it's like, no, I don't want to drink anymore. I don't drink. I choose to be alcohol free. I think that is a really powerful mindset. [00:15:16] Speaker B: Yeah, I get to be alcohol free. It's wonderful. Yeah. And it's all about. Everyone talks about FomO and the fear of missing out, and this, for me, is completely Jomo. It's the joy of missing out, and I wouldn't look back. [00:15:32] Speaker A: Yeah. And so much has changed. So you were working in the business marketing world, is that right? [00:15:39] Speaker B: I was a management consultant for many years, and then I worked in intelligent automation. So, yeah, I was working with clients around the world and doing transformation work and various things like that. So helping clients and businesses sort of work better across people, organization systems and, yeah, it was a very different thing. And I always liked to think I was helping make working lives better and I did a lot of coaching and mentoring through that as well. So I loved that part of my job and I'd done quite a number of courses in coaching and I'd always thought, this is something I want to do when I'm grown up, when I'm sort of older and I'll sort of retire and become a coach. And so it wasn't something I was going to do now. But, yeah, I'd always loved that element. I'd always go to these courses and meet the coaches and think, oh my goodness, this is certainly something I want to do more of. And I'd weaved it into my role a lot that I was coaching and mentoring a lot of people as well. Yeah, I really enjoyed that part of it. [00:16:44] Speaker A: Yeah. And that makes sense that you want to bring those skills into this alcohol free world and help other people. [00:16:52] Speaker B: Yeah, exactly. [00:16:54] Speaker A: Well, let's pick your brain then. So what would you say are your top tips for someone who's changing their drinking? [00:17:05] Speaker B: Yeah, I think first and foremost it's a choice. And I would never say to anyone, you're not going to convince anybody else to stop. So you need to know in your own heart if this is something you want to do and if it is something you want to do, really think about why you want to do it, what's the reason, what's your intention, what would be better? And I know a lot of people go back and forth with this question in terms of am I drinking too much? And they google it. Am I an alcoholic? Can I moderate, can I maybe only drink on weekends? And there's a lot of back and forth and thinking about this. I think it's a general problem for a lot of people. Not problem, but it's something that people are thinking about and they don't feel that they are able to give themselves permission to stop. And so I like to say, regardless of how much you're drinking, you could be having a glass of wine a week. That could be what you do. But if life could be better in some way, either physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, financially, whatever way, if life can be better in some way, then take a break and do what I did. You don't have to say I'm never drinking and certainly I wouldn't recommend you say I'm never drinking again. But take a break for 21 days, take a break for 30 days. Ideally, you want to end up doing 90 to 100 days, but start somewhere small and then head towards that at the 9100 day mark. That's when you really start. You see the benefits, obviously, after about 21, 30 days, but you really start to see the benefits and it starts to get a lot more ingrained in you when you've stopped for 90 to 100 days. So I would say start small and give it a go and give yourself permission and know your why that is really helpful. [00:18:58] Speaker A: And then how about you talked about JoMo instead of FOMo? So what would you say? How can we navigate that? Because I think for a lot of people the challenge is social and especially if they're drinking. Kind of like how you said you were with your friends, or it's become part of how you bond with your partner or something along those lines, or you're doing great. You said earlier like, oh, I just wanted to do 21 days because holidays were coming up and parties and whatnot. That seems to be a real challenge for people. What kind of ideas do you have for that? [00:19:42] Speaker B: Yeah, and of course that's absolutely natural that people are going to feel a bit different. It's a bit odd. It's something that you've done for, depending on your age, the past 1020, 30, 40 years, you go and socialize and you have a glass because people think it helps them relax. It helps them sort of just get into the right mood to enjoy their friends. But one, there are so many alcohol free alternatives, and if that doesn't trigger you, because I know for some people it can be triggering. I'd certainly explore the alcohol free world and ring ahead. So wherever you're going, ring ahead and say, what are your alcohol free options? Or go online and look at the menu. If they haven't got anything, think about what you can ask for instead. A lime and soda is always a good option. That generally looks like a nice drink, and it's not. Ultimately, we're sort of tricking the brain. We're saying that we're still having an adult drink, but we are in an adult setting, but we aren't drinking the alcohol piece. And then when it comes to actually answering that question, why aren't you drinking? Which is what a lot of people get asked. I say it depends on how far along you are and how comfortable you are within your own skin. I certainly think if you're really early days, you could be a bit cheeky and sort of say, I'm taking medication or I'm doing a fitness challenge or whatever. You can make something up or you can just say, I don't want to drink tonight, or I'm driving or whatever, come up with an excuse. But as you go on, I actually think it's quite empowering if you're really confident, if you can go in confidently and be very clear that you're not drinking, and this is the reason, and it's because I'm better without it or it's no longer serving me all of those sort of phrases. And I always say, just turn it back to the other person. So respond really quickly with whatever the answer is and then say, how's your week been? Or how was your holiday? Or whatever's been going on for them. People love talking about themselves, and people generally, after they've had their first drink, don't care what you're drinking. So it's just that initial. It's the initial step. Get over that. And then I like to say, if you look at it as an experiment and you're curious about this whole thing and look at what you're doing as a bit of a. Well, actually, I've been doing this for so many years, I'm trying something different and I'm going to experiment, observe people that evening when you're not drinking and see how they are as the night progresses and think about what that means for you and whether or not that's something that you would want. And you might find people are either repeating the same stories again or beginning to slur their words. And you can leave at any time. So always make sure you have a way of, you have an exit strategy and you're not dependent on someone to get home. And so if that's the case, make an exit. If at any point you think you're feeling like you're going to be tempted to have a drink, those are good tips. [00:22:57] Speaker A: And I think you've heard of the irish goodbye, where you just leave and you don't tell anybody. Like, that's okay. I was the queen of that when I was drinking, which probably worried a lot of people, but I saw a meme and it said, I'm practicing the irish hello, where I just don't go. [00:23:20] Speaker B: That's absolutely the other tip. Definitely. If it's something that you think you're allowed to say no. And I think a lot of people, we've all lost our boundaries settings and we don't want to say no, we don't want to let people down, and we do things because we feel we have to do them. And I mentioned earlier, I get to do things. I now get to do what I want to do. I think that a real part of self care is really knowing your boundaries and being able to set boundaries and say no when it's necessary. And if you are early, early days and you're invited to something. And one of my clients said this earlier, that they were invited to something and they were really worried about it. But I said, well, you don't have to go. The person was like, oh, well, it's a work thing. I need to be there. I need to be seen. I got in touch with him the day after and he said, I didn't go. I just decided to stay at home. And I thought that was the right thing to do at the time. So that's sensible. And the person felt a lot better. So I think you have the choice. A lot of people think that they don't have choices. They can't give themselves permission. They have to follow the crowd. They have to do everything that everyone else is doing. And fundamentally, you can do anything you want to do. You just need to be brave and know what you want and go after that. [00:24:50] Speaker A: Yeah, I mean, you're a grown ass adult. Sometimes I have to remind myself that, what am I doing? I think there are some events we're drinking just to tolerate the event itself. And like you said, now you do whatever, what brings you joy and what you like to do, what you choose to do. And when you're in those situations where you feel like you have to go, you feel obligated, then you're more likely to drink at them just to tolerate them. [00:25:22] Speaker B: Yeah, exactly. And that's the other thing about being curious, because a lot of people say, well, I'm worried I'm going to lose my friends and I'm going to be ostracized and various things if I'm not drinking. But it's really taking the time to think about what is it that you really enjoy from those social occasions, or what have you enjoyed in the past from social occasions. Ideally, if it's been a good afternoon, good evening, whatever it is you've gone to, the likelihood is it's the company of the people that you've been in, you've been laughing or the music you've been listening to, or whatever it is that you have been doing. It's not actually the drink that has made it a good or bad event. And to your point, if it's a boring thing to do, then you're going to be bored regardless of whether you're drinking or not drinking. And so then you can discern what are the things you really like doing? What do you want to spend your time doing and go from there? [00:26:25] Speaker A: Yeah. Thank you for that. Speaking of family and friends, I guess you were talking about friends, but I kind of group them together. How has your family and how have your friends responded to this new you? [00:26:40] Speaker B: Yeah, so it's been interesting. So when I took a break, my husband was still drinking, and we've been together like, nearly 24 years now. So we've been together a long time. And a lot of our life has revolved around drinking, I suppose, or having a drink when we went to restaurants, having a drink when we went on holiday, that was just something we did. And so I was nervous at first because I thought, I'm not sure how this is going to go and if I'm going to be tempted, but my husband was very, very supportive from day one. And then when we discovered these alcohol free drinks, he was making me little mocktails and drinks and other things. So that was lovely. But I started to notice that I was getting a bit bored in terms of the conversation or in terms of watching him drinking and thinking, well, we can do other things. You don't need to just sit in front of the tv and have a drink at the end of the night that isn't really living. And so there was a bit of, at the beginning, it was trying to sort of navigate that, but then I think someone said to me, you need to make it a non negotiable for you, and you need to just do what is good for you. And that was really important for me. And that's something I now sort of pass on to my clients, because if you make it a non negotiable and you know you're doing it for you. And that's why I said earlier on that you can't force anybody to do this. You can't make anybody do this. And you yourself have to be in the right frame of mind and ready to do this. You can't and know your why. Otherwise you probably won't be able to make it work. And so I was quite clear that I wanted to try, at least for these 21 days. And then obviously, I carried on. And it got to the point where I started discovering new hobbies and passions and just thought, I'm just going to crack on with it, really. I was just going to keep doing what I'm doing. And we still had a good relationship. It wasn't that our relationship turned, but I was trying to not focus on him drinking. I was focusing on other things. And then about. I think it was just after my. Or just before, or just after. Just before my two year anniversary bursary of not drinking. My husband stopped drinking and he's not drunk since. So I think quietly with what I was doing, he was observing me and probably seeing all the changes, the good and the positive, and said, actually, I've had enough of this. I'm going to not drink. And I thought he'd go back to it, but no, he's carried on. So, yeah, it's been pretty incredible. And then, as for friends, a lot of my friends, I think I was probably an evangelist. So I was pouring people, I was asking people to try my alcohol free drinks. And a few of them actually have got to the point now where they haven't completely stopped, but in the week they only drink the alcohol free drinks. And then on the weekends they might have a couple. And then there were some other friends who I realized the only thing we had in common was going out for drinks. And I just wasn't really there. I wasn't that bothered. So I probably removed myself from those situations and I don't really speak to them. So it's a real mix, and I think you have to be comfortable with that mix. But you also find you discover a whole new bunch of friends with the new activities and new hobbies and passions that you take up and new communities. And there's such a huge community in the alcohol free world that you are bound to find people that you get on with and that you can have a laugh with. And life doesn't end after you stop drinking. I think it's the best kept secret. And actually, it just gives you such an array of experiences that you wouldn't have got if you carried on following the crowd and being a sheep and doing what everyone else does. [00:30:43] Speaker A: Yeah, it is hard at first, navigating that and believing that. I mean, when you're in the first, especially that first 30 day, the first month can feel like a year for some people. But I like your perspective of setting boundaries and having non negotiables and focusing on yourself, especially if you live with a drinker. That can be really challenging for people. And there's a lot of things we do that our spouse or partner doesn't do. And is it like doing a diet or something, for example, or yoga, if you're into that, or whatever? And I don't think we put as much drama into that as we do with drinking. Well, actually, really in general, we put a lot of changing. Your drinking has a lot of stigma attached to it. And so that's why I love that you're, like, thrive alcohol free. It's a choice because it's really helping people feel empowered and really leaning into the positive side of things because it is a gift. I used to look for, like, oh, the magic pill of moderation. Right. If I could just moderate, I would be fine. But honestly, the magic is sobriety is not drinking and that it is so much better on the other side. But change is hard. Change that in between stage. Yeah. Any advice for that kind of in between stage where you haven't really decided yet, you're taking these breaks, they're getting longer and longer, but you're not sure. You're still scared. Any advice for change? [00:32:35] Speaker B: Yeah. And to your point, I think everyone thinks that habits are easy to do. And changing habits after 21 days, a new habit stuck. And actually, the reality is, and I think a survey, a study was done in 2009 that said that habits can take anywhere between 21 days and 154 days. I think around that. And so they don't happen automatically. And it does depend on the person's mindset, the person's motivation. It depends on how they're experiencing it as well. And as I said, if you feel like you're missing out and you feel that alcohol is giving you something still, you're going to keep going back to it. The reason a lot of people try to moderate is because they still feel alcohol is good for them in some way. Red wine is good for the heart, or they feel that alcohol is helping them to relax or to destress or to sleep. And so there are a lot of beliefs around alcohol. And so I would suggest someone writing down what is alcohol giving me versus what is it that it isn't giving me or what don't I like about alcohol? And then really question the things that you think it's giving you. Is it true? And do some research around it. And is it really true that alcohol is helping you reduce stress? And that's not the case because alcoholiday actually exacerbates anxiety, stress and depression. So that's just one example. But when you really look into it and research it and just maybe read a few quit lit which books around stopping drinking, you discover that all the beliefs that you've had might not actually be quite true. So it's being open to one, being honest with yourself around what you think alcohol is giving you versus what it isn't giving you and what you like about it versus what you don't like about it, because a lot of people say to me, but I love the taste of red wine, and I can't not have my glass of red wine because I just love the taste. Is that really the case? Again? What is it giving you? Or I have somebody very close to me who always says to me, I can't stop drinking red wine because I know it's so good for my heart. It's a mediterranean diet, she says. And I'm like, oh, just doesn't really want to listen or take it in. So there are a lot of deep seated beliefs that we all have, and part of the work I do is helping people change, think about those beliefs and helping them to think about things slightly differently and learning more about what alcohol is and alcohol isn't, and the impacts it does really have on our body and our health, such as the fact that it's the cause of 200 illnesses and seven types of cancer, and it's ethanol. And so ethanol is what we fill our cars up with and clean our houses with. And so if you can imagine a woman drinking out of a petrol can, that, to me, isn't very nice, but we don't appreciate all of those things. [00:36:03] Speaker A: I think that's where education comes in and was so helpful for me, is just learning the facts about alcohol and how it affects your heart. I mean, your health. And spoiler, alcohol is shit for your health and your heart. And your heart proven all the heart benefits. I'm passionate about getting that out there. But what was also helpful for me is that was paradigm shifting. Because for so long, if you had a problem with alcohol or couldn't drink, quote unquote, like a normal person, it was because there was something wrong with you. And so when you could examine this addictive substance, like you said, ethanol, a poison, a carcinogen and whatnot, when you could really examine it and what it is doing to you physically, mentally and socially in the bigger picture, how it's been marketed and whatnot, then that was really helpful for me to just kind of let go of some of that shame related to not being able to drink like a normal person. And more and more health organizations are coming out saying, no amount of alcohol is good for your health, just like cigarettes. That was really helpful for me. I did have to eventually tie it in then to, yes, alcohol is shit for your health, and it's my responsibility. And I think that goes back to your point of it's your choice. For me, that was empowering, and that was really helpful for me to finally be able to give up drinking. [00:37:49] Speaker B: Yeah, and it's such a good point. Alcohol is an addictive substance. And so a lot of people think you've got the problem, or I've got the problem, or one of us, one has got a problem, and it just isn't the case at all. Because like anything, if something's addictive, the more you drink it. If you've been drinking it over 20, 30, 40 years or whatever it is, you are getting more addicted to it as you have more of it. And then your tilt tolerance levels going up. And so then you end up drinking more and not feeling it, but your body is working so hard to process the alcohol that it just is so detrimental to health. And to your point, there isn't a healthy amount or there aren't any health benefits at all when it comes to alcoholiday. [00:38:41] Speaker A: Yeah, I hope that that continues to get portrayed and we continue to see changes. I did just see that they had, I think, a new report from the CDC. So it's probably just United States statistics. But the amount of alcohol related deaths for men and women, I think it was between 2016 and 2020. Don't quote me on these, but I think for men, it had gone up like 25% and for women, like 35%. Alcohol related deaths. It's sad. [00:39:15] Speaker B: It's really sad. And it has been shown as well that during COVID the amount of alcohol that was consumed, especially by women, went up exponentially. A lot of people in general drank a lot more than they were prior to that period. So it's really worrying. And again, it's the lack of education. And then also, as I said, the beliefs that people have around alcohol. So again, you can read all these things, but then if you're like the person I talked about, they fundamentally believe in their heart that alcohol, that red wine tastes good and is good for them in some way. And until you can dispel that, even if they read it in books and magazines and studies, they still won't believe it, because that's the subconscious programming of our minds. That's what our programming is going to. And we're looking at the things that are actually proving that that is the true belief and then discrediting everyone, we'll come up with an excuse why, even though it's written in a study that there's going to be another study that says something else, and then you'll go with that study. And so it's really reprogramming your subconscious. [00:40:38] Speaker A: Well, how do you get it to click to connect? I wish there was a trick or that was a big question. How do you change your subconscious beliefs? [00:40:51] Speaker B: It's a very big question. No, there are lots of different exercises that you can do. And really, as I said, it's starting to really challenge those beliefs and writing them down and saying this is my sort of limiting belief or this is my belief around alcoholiday and this is what it really is first and foremost. And starting to then look at that belief and you've got sort of a hologram of beliefs in one folder that says, these are the things I believe and these are things I don't believe. And actually I need to put those beliefs that I've had that I thought I believed into the non belief pile now and then these beliefs into the, this is actually what's really, this is what I absolutely believe now. And then you have to start proving it. So it's writing down your good experiences. So every, at the end of each day, I encourage my, or at the beginning of each day, I encourage my clients to journal, to also write at least five things that they're grateful for so that they can start to collect a view of what's actually good about not drinking. And the more that they write these downs and then I ask them to refer back to them at the end of each week, to really look at the week and think about what all the positives, how they felt, what's changed, how it's changed over a period of time and what good things came out of it. And they could be tiny things. I'm not saying we need to have done amazing things like write books or anything like that, but just everyday things that actually are better because you're not drinking or what you've noticed, where you're maybe more present or you've got more clarity, or you're just noticing more birds in the trees and the leaves and whatever it is, but I just think it takes time. It's not something that happens overnight. But as I said, if you've got a clear why and you're happy to trust the process and go on the journey, you can absolutely be successful and realize that you're not giving up anything, you're only gaining. [00:42:49] Speaker A: Yeah. And I think there's value in things taking time. And if you've had this habit for years, for decades, it's going to take a while to unwind it. And like you said, change your beliefs. And I do think that's why I do like doing these 30 day month. I do alcoholiday. You have a 21 day challenge. I think they're really important because they give people a safe place to practice not drinking and to prove, just to experiment. Like, okay, am I sleeping better? Do I have more clarity? How does it feel to go to a concert without drinking? It helps you practice and helps your brain kind of learn. Like, wow. The benefits of being alcohol free are outweighing the benefits of drinking. Until you tip the scales. The tipping point. Wink, wink. Until you tip the scales to where it becomes just automatic. It becomes part of your belief system. Like, I like this alcohol free life. And when you think about alcohol now, it's like, why would I do that? [00:44:01] Speaker B: Yeah, absolutely. But you're right. It takes time. It doesn't happen overnight. But what I also find is what I've found personally, and many people have found as well, is once you do this, this is the main habit, the main domino habit, that if you can stop drinking, it then helps with so many other habits and helps you to build other habits and get rid of other negative habits, because this is fundamentally the thing that's holding people back from really living their best life. [00:44:32] Speaker A: Yeah, I have a friend in one of my groups who said, like, well, I could go to marriage counseling. I could go on a diet, I could start a new running program. She just had all these things change my job or whatever, or I could give up drinking. And it's going to affect all those things in a positive way. Exactly. Yeah. It is the big domino. [00:45:00] Speaker B: It's so true. And I also like to say to people, try not to use the phrasing, giving up. I'm giving up because, again, that makes your brain feel like you are depriving yourself in some way. Your inner child starts to think, oh, well, I want to rebel against that. And so it makes it a lot harder. So it's using phrases like, I'm ditching drinking or I'm not drinking, but not that you're giving anything up because I fundamentally believe you're not giving anything up. And that's part of the rewiring of the subconscious as well. [00:45:39] Speaker A: That's a good point. And I've also heard instead of, and I guess we shared this earlier, but instead of, I can't drink. I don't drink. [00:45:48] Speaker B: Replacing get to be alcohol free. [00:45:52] Speaker A: Yes. Good. Well, I'm so glad that we got to connect on this podcast. I'm looking forward to being on your show. How can people find you? [00:46:06] Speaker B: Great. Thank you so much for having me on. I've really enjoyed our conversation. And so if people want to find me, you can go to, I'm on Instagram, and you can go to at thrive alcohol free. I have a website, and I have my podcast, thrive alcohol free so they can connect with me on all of those platforms. [00:46:25] Speaker A: Well, wonderful. Thank you so much for joining us. I know it's Friday night for you in the UK, so I appreciate you taking time on your Friday night to have this conversation. [00:46:38] Speaker B: So lovely to speak. Thank you so much and look forward to speaking to you on mine. [00:46:44] Speaker A: Thank you so much for listening to this episode of the Alcoholiday Tipping Point podcast. Please share and review the show so you can help other people too. I want you to know I'm always here for you, so please reach out and talk to me on Instagram at alcoholiday tipping point and check out my website, for free resources and help. No matter where you are on your drinking journey, I want to encourage you to just keep practicing. Keep going. I promise you are not alone and you are worth it. Every day you practice not drinking is a day you can learn from. I hope you can use these tips we talked about for the rest of your week and until then, talk to you next time.

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