Preparing for your dry month: Our top five tips

Lauren Booker | December 2018 | 6 minutes

With January less than three weeks away, you might already be preparing for your dry month - go you! Whether you’ve done it before or you’re a complete newbie, here’s our top five tips for quitting alcohol this Dry January.

1. Throw it away!

If you’re planning on doing Dry January, the best thing to do is remove all the booze from your home. Throw it away or, if you can’t stand the idea of half a bottle of spiced rum going to waste, put it somewhere hard to get to, like your attic or somewhere else with a lot of spiders.

2. Make a plan for situations where alcohol is on offer

You’re probably going to be invited to something at a pub, restaurant, bar or somewhere else with alcohol at some point in January, so you need to be prepared. Deciding beforehand what you’re going to do in those situations will really help you when the time comes. Whether it’s sticking to alcohol-free alternatives (that still look the real deal – if your local doesn’t stock alcohol-free beer and wine you could try a soda and lime), suggesting everyone buys their own drinks or practising saying no, make sure you have a plan.

3. Treat yourself

Not drinking for a month will save you money. And you should use that money to treat yourself. If ever you feel a craving coming on, remind yourself that with every drink you don’t buy, you’re one step closer to buying yourself a holiday, some new shoes or a fancy dinner. That’s great motivation!

It’s important to break the association between alcohol and treating yourself if you want to manage your month. Instead of a glass of wine or a pint, have or do something else you enjoy. You want chocolate? Have chocolate. You want to watch that film for the eleventh time? Let yourself.

4. Assemble your support group

You can try Dry January alone if you want to, but it’s a lot easier with the support of your friends and family. You could even suggest that two (or more!) of you do it together so you can keep each other motivated. Even if no one else wants to join you on your dry journey, it’s important to have a support network in place – people who won’t ply you with drinks, and to encourage you if things are tricky. Your sober buddies don’t have to be physically there. You can find support through the Dry January Facebook community!

5. Fill the gap with fun stuff

Now it’s almost winter, days are really short. Even shorter if you’re hungover and are trying to sleep it off. Now that you’re sober, you’ll have much more time to spend on things you enjoy! As we said in tip three, if you want to watch TV, you should. But you could also use that time to learn a thing you've always wanted to learn, like salsa dancing or playing the guitar. You could even put some of the money you’ve saved towards paying for a few lessons!

These are just five tips to help you go alcohol-free for Dry January, but there’s loads more advice on the blog. You can get extra support by signing up for support emails, or downloading Try Dry: the Dry January app for free. For even more tips and tricks you could also buy the book, Try Dry: The Official Guide to a Month Off Booze.

The most important thing to remember for Dry January is to enjoy it. It’s not meant to be a month of deprivation – it’s your chance to see how great life can be without booze, so that if you want to cut down later it’s a doddle.

Have you downloaded our app yet? You can use it year-round to track your drinking, savings and more! Find out more and download it here. You can also buy our book, Try Dry: the Official Guide to a Month Off Booze, here. It's full of handy tips and advice for giving dry a go - whether that's January or any other month!

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