Let’s face it; sobriety gets a bad rap. People don’t often choose sobriety, or if they do, they’re not very excited about it at first. Many people are forced into sobriety, or they try it because they feel like they are all out of options. However, the truth is that sobriety offers a lot of great benefits, whether you have a substance use disorder or not. Life is better sober, and it’s time we flip the script and offer some concrete reasons for why this is true.
1. No more blackouts
If you’re like me and blackouts are a part of your story, then you know how devastating they can be. There’s nothing scarier and more anxiety-ridden than not knowing what happened the night after heavily drinking. Piecing together a night of blackout drinking can create shame, guilt, and worry. Blackouts are also a sign that your body is having a negative reaction to alcohol. The only way to ensure you won’t ever experience a blackout again is to live a sober life.
2. No more physical sickness from drugs and alcohol
Another drawback of excessive alcohol use is nasty hangovers, or other physical consequences like stomach issues, vomiting, and a cloudy head. I used to justify my hangovers that lasted for days, the vomit that would come up hours after I slept off my drunkenness, and chalk it up to it being a part of a good party. This just isn’t true. The damage we do to our bodies during addiction is long-lasting. I couldn’t understand that vomiting was my body’s way of telling me it didn’t like the alcohol or that it was too much. Today, I have peace of mind in knowing that if I get sick it’s from a cold or flu, not because I’m putting harmful substances in my body.
3. Making conscious choices all the time
When you’re drinking or using the majority of the time, your decisions are influenced by those substances. Alcohol and other drugs have been proven to lower our inhibitions, and if you’re addicted, chances are you are making decisions on impulse most of the time. One of the best things about living a sober life is the ability to make conscious decisions all of the time, not just some of the time. That doesn’t mean I always make the best decisions! I still make mistakes, and I still have learning to do. However, I find comfort knowing that alcohol no longer dictates any of my decisions.
4. More time
One of the most beautiful parts about sobriety is the fact that you get your time back. How many days and hours have you given away to alcohol and drugs? I know I gave away a lot. Getting sober allowed me to earn my time back and spend it the way I want to. I get to decide how I spend my time now. It’s not spent in bed nursing a hangover, or on a 3-day cocaine bender, or at the club until 5am. I get to spend more time on personal development, my career, reading, writing, and anything else that feeds my soul. I’m glad I don’t have that sense of “wasting time by being wasted,” today. I even have time to find new hobbies and friends to dedicate my time to.
5. Save money
Not only do you save time when you’re sober, but it’s also a good money saver. If you’re someone who went out frequently and paid for drinks, partying, or other trips where alcohol and drugs were involved, chances are you spent a good amount of money. Your bank account will thank you in sobriety! In sobriety, you can also learn about budgeting, managing your money, and spending in a healthy way. Money is such a taboo subject that we often don’t pay attention, or take a genuine look at our habits when we are spending on things like drugs and alcohol. Being sober has allowed me to spend and save money on items that hold more importance like schooling, a house, a car, a wedding, and travel.
Getting sober doesn’t have to be the end of the world. In fact, for most of us, it’s the start of a new life – a life we can be proud of, where we have more time and money to do the things we want. It’s a life where we get to be in the driver’s seat instead of alcohol. We make the decisions and we get to take care of our wellbeing and health. No more hangovers, no more blackouts, just a fun, fulfilling life in sobriety.
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