Emily's Dry January® story: knowing that others were on the same journey with me was really motivating

Emily | December 2023 | 6 minutes

Emily used to enjoy a glass or two of wine over the course of an evening. But this soon turned into a bottle every time which soon became the norm. But Dry January® really helped her to take back control.

Occasionally, I'd take a day off drinking but it wasn't until I decided to give Dry January® a go that I really felt the benefits of a longer break. The main benefit for me was better sleep and not waking up with a headache in the morning. I also felt that my liver was thanking me and cheering me on.

Did I miss a drink? Well, even though my partner continued to drink, I was no longer lured into the routine of having a drink at 6pm and found I didn’t miss it at all.

I sleep better, feel sharper and spend less on booze.

The main benefit of doing Dry January® was that it gave me focus; knowing that others were on the same journey with the support of Alcohol Change UK was really motivating too.

I'm delighted to say that I’m now 90% dry. I have the occasional beer or wine (maybe once a fortnight).

Since cutting down, I have lost a bit of weight, sleep better and feel sharper, especially in the mornings. I have spent less on booze ... about £1000 less since January 2023. I've used some of this to buy other things as a treat - nice, healthy, lasting things!

My partner decided he would have a break from drinking too. He cut right back and said it seemed to improve his blood pressure. So, he is now moderating his drinking too.

A key change for me is that I no longer feel like having a drink in the evenings. It's no longer something that I need to battle to resist!

A month off drinking can give you the time to reflect on your drinking habits.

I’ve also discovered that I can socialise with or without a drink. But what’s changed is that I am no longer caught up in the habit of drinking which is very liberating! I'm also not a puritanical type, so I'd like to assure anyone doing Dry January® for 2024, that you don't have to be teetotal for the rest of your life and the benefits of a month off drinking can give you the time to reflect on your drinking habits and how you might want to change them.

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