Do you ever ask yourself why you want to be able to drink moderately instead of abstain altogether? Sure, at first we’d probably say that it’s because we enjoy wine with food, or an ice-cold beer on the back deck, or perhaps being able to drink our favorite mixed drink with friends. But at a deeper level, we really want to be able to drink moderately because we want to be “normal” – we don’t want to be “weak” or have anything “wrong” with us. Unfortunately, thinking that there might be something wrong with us is what has led to much of our out-of-control drinking anyway. So starting to fill that void of needing approval, or ultimately being LOVED, needs to come from us, not from trying to stuff the void with substances or unhealthy relationships.
So where do we start to fill that void and feel LOVED in a healthy way? Start by being kind to yourself and doing good things for yourself. Here are some examples of activities that demonstrate and develop self-love (and ultimately make us complete and self-confident). They may sound ridiculously simple, but you’d be surprised at how many of them you neglect. HINT: Imaging you are responsible for taking care of a child or loved one…aren’t these the same things you would do for them?:
- Get enough sleep (versus pushing yourself too hard and depriving yourself of needed rest)
- Eat healthy foods (versus just grabbing whatever fast food or comfort food you can find)
- Get regular, ENJOYABLE exercise (remember how you used to have play time or recess in school? It’s because your body needs to MOVE! And it doesn’t have to be grueling weight training or cardio workouts – you can get massive exercise from dancing, hiking, canoeing, swimming and body-weight resistance training)
- Ideally, enjoy your work or job (I realize that in this economy it can take a while to land your ideal job, but don’t give up! Life is too short to spend losing your soul to a job that is toxic or not fulfilling!)
- Surround yourself with loving, supportive people (versus toxic, critical or bad-influences)
- Drink minimal amounts of alcohol
- Pray or meditate– have frequent interaction with your higher power or subconscious mind
- FACE YOUR FEARS!! – This is huge – the best way to gain self-confidence and self-esteem is to deal with conflict or adversity HEAD on, and see that you have the ability to OVERCOME versus sticking your head in a bottle of alcohol.