Habits of successful ex-drinkers 1: Getting to know your WHY
People who have successfully quit drinking and positively enjoy their life sober keep their motivation (their reason for doing it or “their why”) really close. They think about it, they work on it, they draw it, they write it, they speak it, they model it, they imagine it, they fixate on it.
By getting up close and personal with their why, they make friends with it. When they’re friends with it, they can nurture and develop it. This makes it easy to achieve.
So, what do I mean by “their why”?
Your why is your big motivator. It’s all the reasons you want to leave drinking behind you (what you don’t want in your life anymore) and all the reasons you want to be sober (what you want to gain – how you want to be different – what you do want in your life instead).
For example, my why was not wanting the:
• Hangovers • The fears for my health (mental and and physical) • The shame, guilt and embarrassment • The impact on my relationships • The decreasing self-confidence • The wasted time • The high levels of anxiety and panic • The slugging through each day • The fixation on alcohol
anymore, and wanting instead:
• A clear head • Fresh breath • Energy and vitality • A healthy mind and body • Healthy relationships • To look people in the eye and feel happy and confident • To make the most of my time • To get rid of anxiety • To enjoy my days • To seize and enjoy all the opportunities that life gives me • To work out who I am and what I want to achieve • To achieve my aspirations
It’s not enough to simply say, “Well, my why is that I want to feel better.”
What successfully sober people do is they build a detailed experience of what it will be like when they’re successfully sober, so they get a taste of it. They focus in on the small details, whether that’s how they’re going to look, feel and be when they wake up in the mornings or how they’re going to behave when they’re enjoying a family gathering. And, by getting a taste of this success, they want more of it and so they make it happen.
How friendly are you with your why? Have you started to make friends with it? You can use the Motivation Questions in Module 1 to help you with this and you can keep going back to them if it ever seems like you’re losing touch with it.
You can start to draw a picture of it, you can write it, sing it, give it a character or a personality, model it, blog it… however you do it, when you breathe life into your why, you dramatically increase your chances of success.