My Lists

Saturday, January 19, 2019

My Habit

This month has been crazy busy but unfortunately I still found time to imbibe.  It has definitely been a month so far of discovery.  My word for the year of "Decision" has been helpful.  I've made some really good decisions and some bad ones.

What is different about 2019?

1) Knowing I don't want to drink and that if I make a decision to drink, it will be a full bottle.  Moderation is not possible for me at home right now, maybe never.
2) Knowing that I can make a decision to drink and not get drunk.  I have stopped getting drunk in front of others but I am still allowing for too much wine in my life to call it healthy.
2) Knowing that I CAN make a decision to not drink and it's crazy how lovely the sleep is and how bright eyed and cheery I am the next day.
3) Knowing that just because I can drink at a restaurant or at other peoples homes, doesn't translate to being able to drink at home.

I have a habit to still work on breaking.  I've spoken of Gretchen Rubin's The Four Tendencies [click here for previous post] probably too often but it permeates my life in so many ways.  Ever since I was shown this, it remains true to my personality.  One would think that discovering this about myself back in 2016, that I would have made more progress.  I would say that while I haven't changed a ton, I have become hyper aware of my tendency to let myself down but not others.

I never drank to be the life of the party.  I'm pretty happy in my own skin around others so I never needed it to be more relaxed and confident or more social.  I strictly need it to tune out the things I'm unhappy about in regard to myself and what I personally want to accomplish and haven't.  Whether that's more exercise, better diet, pushing more in my career, better running of my household, cooking, etc.

Drinking is the easy way out at the end of the day.  The mornings are always fresh and new and the day has so much potential.  At the end of the day I just want to sit and relax.  I have gotten any exercise I'm going to do, done.  I have finished working for the day.  I have gotten any cleaning I'm going to do, done.  I've either finished dinner or I'm not handling it that evening and hubs is.

See, around 6pm, I'm pooped.  I don't have any desire to work more, clean more, exercise more, plan menus, do laundry etc.  Why do I drink instead of reading a book, a magazine, watching a tv show, taking a bath?  Because then I can zone out and not face how I really feel about myself in all these areas.  It's like push, push, push, zone out.  Never letting myself feel badly about what I haven't done.

I would say I have had wine about 1/3 of the time so far this month.  Much better and much more mindful than I was doing last year.  On the days I didn't drink a few were easy because I had events to attend and, once I'm out of the house, I don't think of drinking.  Well, it probably crosses my mind but it's just not an option so the thought moves along out of my head pretty quickly.

I also went and took a bubble bath a few times.  I have a wonderful jetted tub with chromatherapy.  Lol, meaning colored lights filter through the water and I can select one color if I prefer depending upon my mood..... But I can't get my brain to stop beating myself up for how I look naked.  Sitting here typing this morning, I chuckle.  I look okay all things considering but at the end of the day, whaling in the tub, my self esteem plummets.  Not sure why.

I've tried watching tv shows, reading books, etc.  But then as I go to bed, it takes me forever to go to sleep because I feel like I have wasted time.  (Same thoughts that go through my head, however, when I wake up at 2am after having would think my brain would make this connection...)

Some nights I've just said "fuck it", tuned out, slept poorly and felt a little grouchy the next morning.  Fortunately those nights are getting fewer in between but I would like to eliminate them completely. 

I know the answer is to just make the decision to not drink and do something else in the evening.  I'm getting there but I'm trying to reinforce that with an underlying true desire to not want what drinking results in.  (pardon my grammar, it must grate mercilessly on some but we'll just call this a stream of consciousness if that's okay....)

I've been trying to get a handle on how I feel about myself......

Is it shame?  Not really.  I don't feel humiliated or distressed by my thoughts or behavior.

Is it a feeling of inadequacy?  I don't know, maybe, but I also feel super competent in many ways as compared others.  Almost too much sometimes.

Is it perfectionism?  I don't know, I don't really need things to be perfect and I sort of roll with the punches.  My closet is a disaster and I happen to like to go to bed with a pretty clean kitchen but lord knows when I last cleaned behind the toaster.

Maybe the term is just overwhelmed.  I focus on certain things and not on others, then feel bad about what I blew off because I see others doing it.  I see others exercising and loving it, so why do I prefer to pay bills and do my accounting?  I see others eating vegetables and loving it, but why do I really prefer toast?

I always "know" what I need to do.  Drinking is a way of tuning out the knowing.  Drinking has kept me from beating myself up too much, and consequently getting frustrated with family as well, and I am more light hearted before bed......until I beat myself up again at 2am.   What a cycle!

I guess I'm just tired and exhausted of constantly letting myself down.  I don't let down others, just me.  I never feel let down by others, just by me.  I'm going to do some more research on this.  I found one suggestion of having an "unguilty day".  Don't let anything make the list of what has to be done that isn't what I really want myself to do.  So spend a day or devote a half day to reading, yoga, other exercise, reading recipes for better foods, and don't let other chores choke this out.  Carve out time and be religious about fitting in those things I feel bad about. 

Hmm.....sounds like between 5 and 8pm in the evening might be just be a good time.....

Hoping to get this Habit Done in 2019!


  1. I think an unguilty day sounds great. A day to let yourself off the hook. I am the same as you, I can drink one glass if out with others, but could never manage that at home!

  2. The odyssey of it all! I’m finding my way, moving forward, and then I don’t.
    I slip back, or sideways because of the enjoyment of drinking, except when it’s not.
    I understand you. I’m cheering you on. You can and will overcome this misuse of alcohol.
    All in time, sooner rather than later. You will!

  3. "Drinking is the easy way out at the end of the day." i know exactly what you mean in this line. that is why i drank at home alone for years. i learned that i HAD to replace it with something, otherwise I couldn't stop. so that's when I started walking. i would eat dinner, then go for a walk. when we were still in chicago i would walk in the snow. in the ice. in the cold. just because i needed SOMETHING to take the place. here in vegas i still go for walks after dinner, and it helps. walks may not be the answer for everyone, but i do think creating new habits can be helpful. sending you hugs.

  4. I drank at home too. I tried hard to find the place of acceptance for my drinking as well. But there was too much fear in me.
    I was afraid I would one day fall so deep into the bottle that other, more important things, would slip.

    In the end, I didn’t decide on sobriety until I was sober. It’s impossoble to see our own behaviour while in it.

    Hugs. Self awareness is always the start.