Week twelve: Banish the cravings

Millie Gooch | June 2022 | 5 minutes

Millie Gooch, founder of the Sober Girl Society, brings us some brilliant tips on tackling Sober Spring - the three-month sabbatical off alcohol.

When it comes to ditching the drink, here’s the kicker: you can read all the quit lit, go on all the walks and buy all the alcohol-free wine but sometimes, often when you least expect it, a craving will strike. The good news is cravings don’t last too long, especially if you have the tools to tackle them. Here’s a few handy tips for overcoming them in the moment:

Use the H.A.L.T. technique

Our craving for the thing isn’t always about the thing. To elaborate, what might feel like a hankering for an ice-cold pint, could be something else entirely. From lack of sleep to simply just being thirsty the H.A.L.T. technique (Ask yourself am I hungry, angry, lonely or tired?) can help you recognise whether you actually want that rosé or whether you’re just really stressed and in need of a bubble bath.

Grab a furry friend

Studies have shown that pets can have all sorts of instantaneous mood-boosting benefits from easing anxiety to decreasing feelings of loneliness. Got the overwhelming urge to crack open a bottle? Spend time gently patting your fluffy flatmates instead. If you don’t have a pet pooch of your own – websites like borrowmydoggy.com are great for finding canine companions.

Keep hands busy

When smokers quit the cigs, they often report one of the biggest hurdles being that indescribable feeling that something is missing between their fingertips (and it’s why alternative like vaping are so popular). The same can be said for drinkers. Watching TV doesn’t feel right without balancing a wine glass on your lap, pubs don’t feel as friendly without a pint in hand. Whether you quite literally ask for your non-alcoholic drink in its usual glass, invest in a fidget spinner or take up cross-stitch, keeping your hands company can work wonders.

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