The Loop

Mine went something like this.

Feel fat. This makes me unhappy and be less confident. Have a drink. Loaded with calories. Smoke.

Have too many drinks. Loaded with calories. Smoke. Believe I'm more confident. Drunk text. Sleep badly. Wake up. Feel bad and less confident and smell of smoke. Worry about what I said/did/didn't do. Eat. More calories.

Feel fat. This makes me unhappy and feel less confident. Have a drink.

You get my drift. It's a vicious circle full of badness. There is nothing remotely positive in any of the habits mentioned. And the end result is misery.

Last year, various factors including a toxic relationshit, a change of job and health issues have made me seriously assess my own vicious circle. The loop was literally sending me loopy and something drastic needed to happen before something serious did.

I took a long hard look at what the root cause of all my unhappiness was and found the common component was my good old pal alcohol.

Without alcohol, the urge to smoke was immediately gone. The two have always gone hand in hand for me. This was an absolute revelation, as I have tried to (unsuccessfully) give up many times before.

Take alcohol out of the loop and the overwhelming desire for carbs rapidly diminished too. This meant that my habit of massively overeating, not just the next day but most of the week after, has disappeared. Instead, I'm eating sensibly and losing the weight that was zapping my confidence.

The weight was also hindering my efforts to exercise and making me sluggish and lazy. Weekends were becoming increasingly inactive and hangovers were spilling over from one day to two. This was adding to the self loathing and so I'd have another Sauvignon to cheer myself up.

I've never been a good sleeper after a night on the lash. I'm also miserable without a good nights kip and so the following day after a binge would be tense and anxious, while stuffing my face.

Alcohol basically gives false hope that you will feel better, be a happier, shinier version of you. This is an absolute lie. Alcohol is a fun sponge. It steals all the good bits and replaces them with bad. We all believe alcohol is a reward but what other drug do we think it's acceptable to reward ourselves with? Why do we choose to reward ourselves with a poison? I challenge you to name anything else that makes us feel so bloody awful, that we choose to take time and time again under the guise that we will have a great time?

For me, the positives of not partaking are far outweighing the numerous negatives of something that I incorrectly believed was making me having the best time ever. Now I am actually becoming that happier, shiner version of myself and the bonus is it's not costing me my health or my wealth.


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