Feck the bread situation, I’m nearly out of wine.
Well the snow is making life very different at the moment. Our fantastic front line people still turning up for work. The run on bread. The funny cartoon and memes. I so enjoy our crazy Irish humour. Yet I noticed so many of our jokes are about drink.
The snow gauge made from a bottle of wine.
The ongoing jokes about having all the essential supplies in with a picture of bottle of wine.
All the snowmen holding a bottle of wine or a beer can.
Our drinking culture is everywhere
Despite the fact it’s a drug which kills 3 people every day, we treat drink as part of the craic. It’s a product on the same level as bread. Running out of wine is worse than running out of food. Anyone who does n’t drink is seen as no fun and antisocial. It’s part of the reason why it’s so difficult to cut back on drinking
Do you find it difficult to change your drinking?
Have you ever sat down and thought to yourself
“I have to stop doing …”
It could be anything from cutting down on how much coffee or alcohol you’re consuming. Or giving up alcohol or cigarettes. Or getting out of a bad relationship that you keep going back to.
This is my last one
Are you like most of us? You say it again and again.
This is my last time/one”,
and every time you say you start you hear yourself say,
“That’s it finally I have this,
I don’t care what happens I’m never going back to doing that again”
only to find yourself back there sooner than you did time beforehand!
Yep, that’s the way I was too (sometimes I’m still like that!)
I’m was like most women, always trying to change my poor habits and improve my life…but often only in my head.
I never actually succeeded in the “change my habits” process for years. For example when I tried to stop smoking.
I had this crazy internal battle with myself
I was always repeating the same words over an over again year after year
“what’s wrong with me,
why can’t I just do this”
I always thought it was the way I was going about it.
The more grief I got from my husband and children about smoking in the kitchen the more I smoked. The more agitated I became.
I did the usual bouts of stopping on Monday, not smoking till afternoon and then finishing my last cigarette before seven pm.
“I’m quitting.That was it. No more smoking for me, from Monday on I’m going to be a non smoker”
I’d wash all my ashtrays and put them away.
I’d smoke more
About this time I’d start smoking like tobacco was going to be made illegal. My cigarette intake would almost double!
My husband (who’s also an ex-smoker so should have known better!) would start the comments like
”You’re only making it harder for yourself.”
My theory for doing this was
“If I give myself enough of a sickening, I’ll never want to smoke another cigarette again for as long as I live.”
Then on the day, I was to give up I’d always wake with a sore throat, chest and stomach pain. All due to the amount I had smoked over the weekend.
I’d spend hours thinking of excuses
I’d then spend hours trying to think of an excuse to stay smoking. They ranged from.
“Today is a busy day, I haven’t time to do it”,
“I’ve been asked to Marys party, I’ll stop after that” to
“My mood is very low, I don’t want to put too much strain on myself”.
To me these were all very valid reasons. So I could justify staying smoking.
Right back to square one
So I’d find myself right back to square one again. Feeling completely frustrated. My cough was getting worse. I was very conscious of the tightness in my chest in the mornings that could eventually turn into cancer. It scared me thinking I would die and have so much of my life undone.
I’d already stopped drinking why could I not stop smoking?
So where was I going wrong? I had every reason to stop; I had already quit drinking years beforehand. I had support, nicotine patches, gum, and lots of people I could turn to like the smoker’s helpline.
The Nicorette patches would go on and stay there sometimes for a few days and sometimes for a few hours but eventually come off. The gum I didn’t like and the smokers’ helpline I never phoned. Why? Probably because if I called them, it might mean they would check up on me and then I’d have to lie.
What’s your reason for change?
The very first thing you have to do before deciding to change any habits is to understand your reasons for changing. Because that helps you stick to your decision. Yes, I know that on some level you have made a decision. If you are doing something active and thinking about it but until you actually understand your reasons for change, you’re wasting your time. With me I was was trying to give up smoking for health reasons.
That was the wrong reason for me
But for me personally, the health reason was the wrong one. It was too far off in the distance- even though I was coughing. I needed something different to help me succeed.
Everybody had different reasons for why they want to change some aspect of their lives. It can be smoking, drinking, weight etc.
The trick to success is to make sure your reasons for changing are big enough for you. That they are your deal breakers. Next week I’ll tell you how I found my deal breakers and succeeded in giving up smoking.
But here’s one last joke courtesy of @WillLeahy
“Ah the irony of a Thursday night in March and all the pubs are closed.
You do realise that this is God’s revenge for that Good Friday drinking malarkey”
Till next week.