To stop drinking on your own is not going to be easy. Even with support, stopping drinking is difficult.
Questions to Ask Yourself:
Before solving your drinking problem you need to think about how big a problem it is. You need to recognize all the factors associated with your drinking, so that you can change every one:
Am I an Alcoholic?
Alcoholics Anonymous have a list of questions on their website including Do I drink alone? Is drinking making you unhappy? Do you drink because you are shy with other people? Do you drink to increase your self-confidence? Do You Drink alone? Check out all the questions.
Answer the questions honestly. You need to recognize the scale of your problem and whether it is realistically possible to stop drinking on your own. If you are an alcoholic you are much more likely to succeed with the support of Alcoholics Anonymous than you are to stop drinking on your own.
Why Do I Drink?
Do you drink alcohol as an emotional prop, as a means to feel better about yourself and your life?
Stop drinking on your own and do something active when you would normally be drinking. Join a team. Tell everyone on the team that you are an alcoholic, so you never touch alcohol (even if you are not really an alcoholic). Your team-mates will respect your strength and be supportive.
Do you drink because you are lonely?
Go to classes, do voluntary work, take out a gym membership, join an amateur theater group. Meet people. Stop drinking on your own because it is not solving the problem. Meeting people will solve your loneliness. It is always easier to say you are an alcoholic, than it is to "just have one", so say to yourself that you have an alcohol addiction problem and cut it out of your life altogether.
When Do I Drink?
Time your new activities for when you are most tempted to drink on your own. One way to stop drinking on your own is to never be alone when you would normally be drinking.
Does your drinking follow certain events or patterns? Analyze your drinking patterns, then change your life to remove the patterns that drive you to drinking on your own. Change your job, if that is linked to your drinking, move house, end your marriage. Whatever is making you drink, get rid of it.
Where Do I Drink?
If you drink at home, never buy a can of beer or a bottle of wine. Tell everyone that you are an alcoholic, so from here on your house is going to be an alcohol-free zone.
If you drink at a bar, go to a different bar and drink Coke or another soft drink. It is better to avoid bars altogether, especially on your own.
Who Do I Drink With?
Your drinking partner may or may not have a drink problem, different people have different perceptions of what constitutes a drink addiction. Tell him or her that you have been told by your doctor to give up alcohol. Say you have become an alcoholic, if necessary, but get your friend on your side.
Once you have admitted to having a problem people will understand your need to deal with it. Often it is easier to give up alcohol altogether than it is to stop drinking on your own.
How Much Do I Drink?
Write down how much alcohol you have had in the past week. Is it a lot more than a pint of beer or two glasses of wine a day? You might have a problem if you are drinking a lot on most days. Check out the Alcoholics Anonymous "Are You an Alcoholic?" questions
Stop Drinking on Your Own - Immediate Plan of Action
Recognize the need for action
- If you think you might have a problem, then you probably DO have one
Decide the actions you will take
- Tell everyone that you are an alcoholic. Remember there is no such thing as a recovering alcoholic, once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic
- Have no alcohol at all, ever, anywhere for any reason
- Start doing activities that involve other people, especially at the times you would be drinking alcohol
Stop Drinking On Your Own - Medium Term Plan of Action
Remove the stimuli that drive you to drink
- Look for a new job
- Meet more people
- Avoid being alone at your "drinking time"
Stop Drinking On Your Own Long - Term Plan of Action
Remember there is no cure for alcoholism. The changes you make are for life.
- Do something constructive with every minute of every day
- Make sure everyone you meet knows you are an alcoholic
- Tell your children you are an alcoholic, explain to them what it means and the changes that are necessary
- Stay away from pubs and bars
- Develop a taste for grape juice and tonic water
- Ask your partner to watch for the first sign of any relapse and to tell you straight away
Stop Drinking On Your Own - Fall Back Position
You need a fallback position because most people do not manage to stop drinking on their own and you have to understand that the odds are against you. If you cannot succeed on your own then you will need to go to Alcoholics Anonymous for help.
Set yourself a two week deadline.
Mark today's date on your calendar.
Find the date 2 weeks from now and write "www.aa.org" in that date.
Put a red spot on the calendar every time you fall back and have a drink
In 2 weeks time, if you have more than 2 red spots on your calendar visit the Alcoholics Anonymous website, because you are not managing to stop drinking on your own and you need help to get your life back.
Alcoholism is a disease that affects you and your family. There is no cure except to totally abstain from alcohol. Your "cure" is up to you.