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Binning the Beers

Mark's story

What motivates you to cut back? Mark shares his story on pledging to drink less.

"I didn’t see a problem"

“I knew I needed to make a change when my girlfriend said she was concerned about how often I was drinking. It wasn’t that I was drinking loads, but the habit had crept up on me a bit. Having a beer was my daily reward for working hard; a celebration that I’d lived another day. Because I’d usually only have one or two I didn’t see a problem.

I started to see things differently when questioned on whether I could go without if challenged to: if not, then something could be very wrong!

"I fell into a habit of regular drinking"

The more I thought about it, the more I realised that regular drinking was just a habit I’d fallen into. Beyond that it didn’t serve much of a purpose, aside from the fact that I like the taste of a good craft beer. I would make excuses to have a pint: it's been a tough day; I’ve achieved x; someone I know and want to chat to will be at the pub. When I asked myself “how often does someone actually invite me out for a drink?”, the answer was “very rarely”.

Reasons to not  drink

Then I started thinking about the reasons to not drink. Top of the list was saving money: those craft beers aren't cheap, and the cost soon adds up. I made a mental list of all the other things I could spend that money on, and my motivation to cut down hit the roof!

I wanted to ease the worries my girlfriend had and realised our relationship could be better if I didn’t drink as often. She doesn’t like to drink as it makes her feel poorly, so I made a point of deciding to not drink alcohol when we’re out together. We both have a better time.

Tracking my savings

Every time I would have normally gone for a pint and choose not to, I put a fiver in a jar at home. That way, I can see the benefit of drinking less, and keep dreaming of the clothes, trainers and weekends away those extra pennies will buy!

I still enjoy the odd beer but am saying no more often and feeling good for it so far.”

You too?

What’s your motivation to cut down? To save money? To improve relationships? To better your sleep? Perhaps you want to cut calories and lose weight; to kick the hangovers or improve your health?

Go-to apps to track your consumption include: DrinkawareTry Dry and Drink Free Days.

Whatever your reason, get started today by creating your My LiveWell Healthy Living Profile.

 

How does this work?

The tailored approach LiveWell Dorset uses to come up with solutions to the things that are stopping us achieving our goals, is based upon work done by University College London developing the COM-B model of behaviour change. In this model, all behaviour is influenced by understanding a person’s capability to change, their opportunity to change and their motivation to change. By understanding which of these is the biggest barrier to change, we can tailor support accordingly. This model of behaviour change is at the centre of the support we offer, online and in person.

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