When you first decide to stop drinking alcohol there is a bit of a dilemma about what to drink instead. Do you want to be drinking a near imitation of your favourite alcoholic drink or keep your beverage choices as simple as sparkling water? You might ask, “Are non-alcoholic drinks right for me?” The answer to this question really depends on many things and can only be answered by you. Here are some things you might want to consider when making your choice:
- Have you stopped drinking because you feel you could have alcohol use disorder? In some recovery programs, it is highly discouraged to drink anything that closely mocks or smells like your favourite alcoholic beverage, especially in early sobriety. Lifestyle changes are key at this stage and you might consider playing things on the safe side. Non-alcoholic beer, in particular, very successfully imitates the real thing so partaking in some of these beer choices could put you in dangerous territory.
- Do you consider yourself simply, “sober curious,” a term originating from the author Ruby Warrington? People who are “sober curious” are generally asking the question, "What benefits could I experience if I removed alcohol from my life?" A near substitution to your favourite alcoholic beverage might be just the thing you are looking for as you navigate social situations alcohol-free. Perhaps you are looking at a temporary period of abstinence from alcohol as an experiment, but are still quite happy to be drinking a mocktail or zero beer.
- Are you simply interested in reducing the amount of alcohol you drink over an evening, a week, or even a month? Perhaps you are facing a long social evening and want to mix alcoholic beverages with non-alcoholic beverages to reduce impairment and a nasty hangover the next day. Thankfully, in this new world of tasty non-alcoholic drinks, this is now an accessible option. And a sensible one, too!
Wherever you fit into this new beverage world, there are delicious and sophisticated options available.
Margaret is a Certified Professional Life Coach, Certified Professional Recovery Coach and a Certified She Recovers Coach. She holds a B.A in Psychology, a Masters Degree in Education and has worked in the field of Education for over 30 years.