Your own brain will lie to you.

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When I first quit alcohol it felt like I was standing on the edge of a cliff staring into a black abyss (that abyss being an alcohol-free life). I was utterly terrified.

"My life will be so boring if I quit drinking. I'll be a sad, sober loser. Nothing will be fun. Everything will feel empty and bland." So said my brain when I was contemplating quitting.

Luckily I didn't listen and jumped into the abyss anyway. And slowly as the weeks went by I settled into my sober skin and began to realise that a life with no alcohol isn't miserable and dull - it's just a life. And with no wine in my belly I'm not boring - I'm just me.

Then I realised that my own brain had lied to me. I realised that I didn't need alcohol to be a fun person. I didn't need alcohol to have a social life. I didn't need to drink in order to feel fulfilled. I didn't need booze for anything.

What do I do now that I'm sober? Well, aside from have a rocking good time whenever I attend a concert, wedding or party, I have a life that is rich and full.

I love the mornings and really appreciate sunrises that don't come with a side order of a sick gut, pounding head and guilt.

I enjoy hanging out with my sons, playing games and going on outings (no alcohol in my system to disconnect me from them or miserable thoughts about drinking to distract me).

I appreciate simple pleasures like dog walks, fragrant herbal teas, fresh flowers, comfy pants, massages.

A life without alcohol in it is not boring or sad, it's just a life without alcohol in it.

Positive, feel-good emotions are way more amazing when they are experienced in the raw.

There is no extra layer of confusion or befuddlement added on top of tricky stuff because I think straight all of the time.

And best of all I feel amazing for for having quit booze and turned my life around!

My brain didn't tell me all of these things when I first set out to get sober. Because it didn't know.

If you're in the tough early stages of quitting and your head is still full of thoughts about how terribly boring your life is going to be.. don't trust it. Don't trust your brain right now and the messages that it is sending you. Don't believe that little voice in your head that tells you a life with no alcohol in it is going to be miserable and dull. Don't believe it when you tell yourself that weekends will be bleak and lonely if you can't drink. Don't believe it when you form images of yourself as a boring sober loser. DON'T BELIEVE ANY OF IT! It's all bloody bollocks. 

Trust that with a big effort, and some time, your thinking will turn around, and you will realise the lies your brain told you. And eventually you'll come to feel how I do now. Happy and grounded and grateful most of the time.

Take the leap, ignore the lies, and jump into the abyss. Your future self will thank you for it.

Love, Mrs D xxx

10 Comments
  1. Tafkap 2 days ago

    Day one. I think I’m going to find this blog very helpful

  2. Cat66 3 days ago

    This is a great read and so true. Just what I needed today, thank you x

  3. kaydee 6 days ago

    A great read and well done on sharing your story. I refer to the voice in my brain as a wine witch and imagine her as an old crone with a scary face who has a wheedling convincing whispering voice. I get really tough with the wine witch and beat her back into submissio as soon as she appears. I hope in time that she stops appearing at wine o’clock every day.

  4. Michael6 6 days ago

    I relate to this. The brain tells so many lies about booze. I’m only in my second day (again) af. I recognise that every time I pick up on day 4 or 5 there is always a lie/faulty belief in my mind. “I need this escape.” “It will lift boredom.” “It just won’t be as good if I try to be creative without alcohol.” “I have been under such mental pressure, I need a break.” Etc etc etc….Yes lies. Anyone familiar with the scene in Lord of the Rings where Grima Wormtongue is whispering lies into the ear of the king to keep him bound by darkness and blindness? That sums the lying voice up. It’s a voice I ALWAYS regret listening to. Here’s to ignoring it!

    • Lisa 5 days ago

      I feel ya ! Day 5….again.

  5. Classic50 1 week ago

    without alcohol I experience so many simple pleasures, even as I write now my dog is asleep on my feet, a candle is sending out lovely scent and I feel clear headed and calm…all of this JUST from one change in behaviour. And yet, I’m in early days, its still hard…not in this moment, but earlier this evening I felt a wave of clashing thoughts. I’m glad I read this post Mrs D, even though its been many years of healthy sobriety for you, you still take time to share with others with kindness and empathy, it means a lot!

  6. Tom4500 2 weeks ago

    I get a good feeling from the notions of “past Tom” and “future Tom”; i.e. thanking past Tom for going AF; looking forward to future Tom as everything continues to inch its way better. Really a pleasant concept you present there.

  7. janetv 2 weeks ago

    So true!!! Though my health was seriously in jeopardy and my family were avoiding me, I just couldn’t imagine a life without alcohol. One day I knew it was over. Quit or die, so I quit. Though it has only been 5 months, the joy I am experiencing is remarkable. My days are filled with books and movies and family and art. I will never go back to being that woman. Tell the voices to get out of your freaking way!

    • Classic50 1 week ago

      congratulations on 5 months that’s really great! I have found new space for learning from art and photography, and I’m enjoying the world so much better than I did even a week ago. It just seems so interesting now my head’s not feeling like cotton wool…

  8. barnmomma 2 weeks ago

    This was great, Mrs. D. Just what I needed to read this morning. Thank you! XXX

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