Breaking the Habit: A 66-Day Countdown to a Mindful Summer
Does a hangover-free summer period sound like something you could get around? Then you’re reading this at just the right time! Studies have shown that it takes an average of 66 days to break a habit. Now, imagine if we reframed our thoughts around our alcohol consumption and treated the patterns as habits we needed to break. With just 73 days until Christmas, the social festivities are about to arrive in full force. In this article, we’ll explore how you can start breaking your habits around drinking and head into the summer period with connection and clarity, making this summer one to remember (quite literally)!
Understanding the Habit of Excessive Drinking
Many of us have developed patterns of excessive drinking over the years, especially during the holiday season, we can chalk anytime up to a good time to drink, and long summer days is right up there! These behaviours can be deeply ingrained and often go unquestioned. However, reframing these patterns as habits we can break opens the door to a whole new approach to summer this year.
Why the 66-Day Rule Matters
Breaking a habit isn’t easy, but understanding the timeline can be a game-changer. Research indicates that it takes an average of 66 days to change a habit. By starting this journey now, you can create new, healthier habits in time for the “silly season”, with less silly and more control.
How to break your habits around drinking:
- Set Clear Goals: Begin by setting specific, achievable goals for your alcohol consumption. What changes would you like to see in your drinking habits by Christmas?
- Identify Triggers: Recognise the situations, emotions, or people that trigger excessive drinking. Once you’re aware of these triggers, you can develop strategies to avoid or manage them.
- Seek Support: Share your intentions with friends and family. Their support can be invaluable in helping you stay accountable and make positive changes.
- Create Healthy Alternatives: Replace the habit of excessive drinking with healthier alternatives. For example, try sipping on non-alcoholic drinks or experimenting with making your own alcohol-free drinks that replicate your favourites (this is how I learnt how to make a mean alcohol-free Italian Spritz).
- Mindfulness and Moderation: Practice mindfulness in your drinking. Be present in the moment and savour the experience rather than drinking excessively without thought.
As you work on breaking your drinking habits, approach the holiday season with a fresh perspective:
- Prioritise Connection: Make connecting with friends and family the highlight of your celebrations without alcohol being the focal point.
- Celebrate Mindfully: When you do choose to drink, do so mindfully. Savor the taste and limit your consumption to enjoy the moment without going overboard.
- Create Alcohol-Free Traditions: Plan activities and traditions that don’t revolve around alcohol, like visiting Christmas lights, outdoor adventures, or cooking together. You could try a ginger-bread house, be warned they are fiddly as hell!
As we count down to Christmas with 73 days left, there’s no better time to start breaking your habits around drinking. Embrace the opportunity to create new, healthier habits that will bring greater joy and fulfillment to your celebrations. Imagine going into the new year without the “new year, new me” rhetoric, you will already be crushing it! Cheers to a summer filled with genuine connections, cherished memories, and a healthier, happier you! Get started today with Mind The Sip.