Is the Person You are Living with Making You Fat?

OK – so maybe that sounds a little exaggerated or even like you’re giving up your power to another person – but you really have to become aware of why you eat too much or drink too much for comfort. Way too often we are persuaded to act differently than our ideal because of those around us. And yes, while we’re all aware of peer pressure or going with the flow – there’s another element that we may not be mindful of – conflict avoidance or trying to seek some type of escape or coping mechanism … [Read more...]

Refocus the Anxious Energy – Get off the Hamster Wheel & Be Productive

dealing with anxious energy

If you are keeping a journal or paying attention to your drinking habits, you probably have noticed how often you drink because something is bothering you and you can’t get it off your mind. You keep worrying about one thing or another - and in order to get relief you turn to a bottle of wine or bag of cookies. But instead of trying to drown that anxious nervous energy, use that energy to get something productive accomplished. For instance, If you get into an argument or disagreement … [Read more...]

And the Survey Says…

Thank you to all of you MODER8 customers that responded to my survey. I promised I would report the results, so here's what you said: 94% of you said that you were drinking less 26% said that you were doing great and that your drinking is cut in half or better However, only 13% of you felt like your drinking is where you want it to be. So I looked through the answers of the most successful users and this is what they said they were doing: The most successful MODER8 users had a … [Read more...]

The Two Most Important Skills in Moderate Drinking – Here’s How to Master Them

control your drinking

If you really think about it, the two most important skills in moderate drinking are: Being able to stay Alcohol-Free (AF) on planned AF days. Being able to STOP at the amount you plan to stop at when you do drink – derailing the binge. If you’re new to moderate drinking, you may be saying “no kidding! If I could do that I wouldn’t have a problem!” But the truth is just like anything that seems nearly impossible, it just takes work, dedication, and a desire to achieve your goal “no … [Read more...]

Alcohol Abuse – Genetic Brain Disease or Bad Habit?

This topic may very well be one of the most passionately argued controversies in the addiction community – right up there with politics and religion in the rest of the world. I can tell you if it were simply black and white, the problem would have been “fixed” a long time ago. Alcoholism is really a combination of brain physiology and bad habits involving not only genetic personality traits and vulnerabilities, but learned behavior and “etched” neural pathways in the brain. According to … [Read more...]

Do You Replace One Bad Habit with Another?

Don’t get me wrong, my primary objective with MODER8 and this site is to help you reduce and control the amount you drink…however it works best for you. I encourage people to identify substitutes for drinking that make them feel good, peaceful, or happy. For some people, they can substitute a reasonable amount of food or other behavior as a treat or reward, but way too often, that substitute becomes another excessive bad habit resulting in the same negative feelings, shame and health problems as … [Read more...]

Are You Including Rewards in Daily Action Plans?

So maybe you’re good at setting goals and creating action plans to accomplish those goals, but how good are you at including healthy, positive rewards for finishing the tasks that lead to accomplishing your goals? Way too often, we turn to alcohol, food or other unhealthy means of pleasure as our reward or pain reliever. When you are planning your activities for the day, also plan your rewards and positive, happy activities as well. I invite you to use the log sheet that I use to plan out my … [Read more...]

Moderate Drinking vs. Abstinence – Which on is Right for You?

balance-moderation-abstinence

I’m going to be really honest – if you’ve been drinking very heavily for years or decades, tend to binge to black-outs or started drinking at an early age – abstinence is easier.  However, if you REALLY want to be able to drink moderately or socially, then it is a potential option for you if it is something that you are willing to commit to and truly work at – because learning to moderate your drinking takes a lot of work.  But I did it – and you can too. So, having said that, you have to … [Read more...]

Are Your Bad Habits Getting in the Way of Your Goals or Success?

Face of Dog

Think about it – how often do you skip action items on your To-Do list because you just don’t feel like doing them – maybe you were hung over or demotivated from missing your workout and binging on sugar.  Or maybe you let some circumstance in your life trigger you to drink or eat something not on your program or turn to your other bad habit of choice – and you went on a binge for an extended period of time…eventually turning into a daily occurrence. You just completely forgot about your plan of … [Read more...]

Our Brains Need LOVE

love

Valentine’s Day is just a couple days away and of course, just like every other blogger, I’m choosing to write about LOVE. But I want to talk about LOVE and how we as human beings are wired to feel good from love, and how important it is to find love or the good feelings that we get from love in healthy ways. From a basic neuroscientific perspective, our bodies release a hormone called oxytocin that makes us feel good when we are “in love” or when we have romantic bonding or even social … [Read more...]

How to Stop Letting Your Fears Lead You to Drink

scared-cat

Is fear causing you to drink too much? How many times have you launched into a real doozy of a binge because you were afraid of something such as losing your house or your spouse or your job? You may not have been consciously aware those were your thoughts, but if you stopped and took a mental inventory, you might realize that those were the underlying fears. Did drinking DO anything to prevent whatever you were afraid of from coming true? Not likely – at best it just relieved your anxiety … [Read more...]

Alcoholism and Genetics

alcoholism-genetics

Is alcoholism genetic? Is it accurate to say that because your father/mother, grandparents were “alcoholics” that is the reason WHY you have a drinking problem? Not necessarily  - but then again, I don’t know a single person that drinks too much that can say that nobody in their family has had a drinking problem. What we know about genetics and personality traits, including substance abuse – is very limited. Basically because it’s nearly impossible to do the typical scientific studies because … [Read more...]

Breaking Free of Negative Self-Talk and Isolation to Drink Less and Lose the Bad Habits

glass-half-full-positive-attitude

What you say to yourself has everything to do with your level of success in life – at whatever it is that you are trying to change or accomplish. If you say you are worthless, washed up, stupid, incompetent, fat, ugly, broke…then that is what you will believe and that is how you will act.  Negative self-talk leads to negative self-esteem, and negative self-esteem will only lead to further substance abuse in order to escape your own shame and pessimism. And the only thing worse than isolating … [Read more...]

The Importance of Eating (Correctly) When You Drink

balanced-meal

How many times have you drunk on an empty stomach because you either wanted to cut calories or else get a faster, more intense buzz?  How did that turn out for you? I would venture to say that some of your worst drinking episodes and blackouts occurred when you were drinking on an empty stomach.  And ultimately, you probably didn’t enjoy the “buzz” because you got wasted too fast, and the reduction of calories did nothing for you because when your body is metabolizing alcohol, fat metabolism is … [Read more...]

How You Think About Alcohol May Be Causing You to Drink Too Much

What you think affects your behavior – plain and simple. The problem is, sometimes what you think is on the subconscious level. You may not even be consciously aware of what you think or believe. If you’ve been taught that alcoholism is genetic and there is no way for an alcoholic to control their drinking, then subconsciously, you may be “allowing” yourself to drink uncontrollable – even if you don’t consider yourself to be an “alcoholic.” And even then, what you think an “alcoholic” is can … [Read more...]

How is Your Drinking Plan Working for You? – It May Be Time to Modify or Create a New One

Do you have a drinking plan? Creating a drinking plan helps to give you guidelines and structure to follow, plus it provides you with personal accountability. If you already have one, how’s it going? You may find that you need to tweak it a bit and break it into smaller, more attainable goals. Taking baby steps in order to make a change can help to improve your success rate. Trying to make too big of a change too quickly can set you up for failure, and ultimately a negative spiral from … [Read more...]

Recognizing MLK – What’s Your Dream?

Dream

As we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr.’s birth, life and accomplishments, I am reminded of the quote from his famous speech, “I have a dream…” Dreams, if we decide to pursue them, are great sources of positive energy and activity that take our focus away from everyday routine and also give us a reason NOT to turn to drinking or other bad habits in order to feel good. This past weekend I co-hosted the Mental Bootcamp workshop along with form Navy SEAL Brad McLeod (sealgrinderpt.com). One of … [Read more...]

Take Action and Make the Change!

getting-started

I’ve said before and I’ll say it again. You HAVE to have a positive reason to cut back or quit any of your bad habits or you just won’t commit.  That means identifying some areas of your life that are less than ideal – or may even be leading to your turning to substance or bad habits in order to cope – and start putting together plans for change. So right now, take a moment and think about 2 or 3 things that would make your life significantly better. Would it be more money, a better job, … [Read more...]

What’s Your Kryptonite? Don’t Let it Stop You – Get Mentally Tough!

What's your kryptonite?

So it’s the first week into 2014 and no doubt you can already tell which of your resolutions you’ll be able to stick with and which ones you’ll just have to give up. So what is it that gets in the way of you accomplishing your goals? What’s your Kryptonite? You may think that your Kryptonite is alcohol or chocolate cake…and if those things just didn’t exist you could be Superman (or Superwoman). You blame those substances for being your downfall – but those substances have really nothing to … [Read more...]

Saying Goodbye to Old Negative Obstacles Keeping You from Your New Year Resolutions and Goals

getting past obstacles

No doubt you’re being inundated with New Year resolution plans and ploys, and perhaps this blog is no different, but what WILL be different is what you DO with the plans and information. When starting any new challenge – whether it is a fitness challenge, financial challenge, or even an Alcohol-Free Challenge (click here to get started), begin by setting a date, creating goals and outlining action items.  January 1st is a great time to start a new program because it is emotionally charged … [Read more...]

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