top of page
Search

Navigating the Path to Freedom : Why You Need an Alcohol Freedom Coach

Updated: Jul 13, 2023




Why do I even need a coach? Good question. Lots of people feel if they are going to rein in their drinking, all they have to do is build up a mindset to change their habit, stop or modify the behaviour, hold fast and bingo, job done.


It always starts out well, the determination to change the behaviour wins out over the desire to drink. Reminding yourself why you are quitting, usually involves reminding yourself of the pain you went through whilst drinking was more than the pain of not drinking.

It can be a long or short battle dealing with the need to stop and the desire to start drinking again. Not drinking makes you miserable but the thought of drinking also makes you miserable. At times it can feel like a no win situation, especially when your resolve starts to wane. We call this internal battle of will, cognitive dissonance. It is a battle between the conscious mind, I don't want to drink anymore and the subconscious mind that says I need to drink because its essential for my survival.


This battle of wills can make cravings more intense, when your brain truly believes it is missing out on what it believes is essential to its existence. The willpower to keep going eventually wears out. You drink again. Shame and guilt sets in, you rationalise, you beat yourself up. If the pain of "drinking more than you want to" rises again, you resolve to avoid that pain. You build yourself up again for another day one. You get on the wagon.. again.


This process of rinse, repeat, recycle again is physically, mentally and spiritually wearing.

If you are stuck in this cycle it is very easy to lose hope, to give in and stop trying to change your life. If there is no hope, the will to even think about trying has all but been exhausted.


People can battle on for years, in my own personal journey I stayed alcohol free using willpower for nearly nine years! It was miserable a lot of the time. I believed a lot of things about myself and alcohol that simply were not true and it caused me to believe I was really missing out on belonging to the alcohol centred/soaked universe. When I first gave up in 2007, there was really only one resource available to read online, AA's big blue book. The whole premise of the book is based on using willpower and support to abstain day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute, with the overriding belief that you yourself are powerless over an insidious disease that only you the alcoholic have. You are not like other drinkers.


Seems like an oxymoron. Being powerless to use willpower!


It wasn't until I picked up "This Naked Mind" by Annie Grace after drinking again from 2016 to 2021 that I really understood the science behind my drinking to excess. Everything clicked into place and I finally understood what kept me miserable all those years. It was the battle between my conscious and subconscious minds over the desire to stop and the desire to keep drinking. That led me to feel like I was missing out, to feeling different to all those other normal drinkers, reinforcing the idea I was broken, had a disease that they didn't.

How you feel about change is everything. If you feel there is no place for alcohol in your life, and you believe the fact that you are not missing out on anything by choosing not to drink, you lose your desire for the alcohol. If there is no desire, then the freedom you crave really is available to you. But I wasn't there yet in my first bout of sobriety.


Prior to finding Annie Grace's book, it was a looong period of staying alcohol free, of learning, periods of self-pity and sometimes anger with the "why only me" thinking, to the breaking of my sobriety, of guilt, of shame and beating myself up, much of which could have been avoided if I had someone to guide me and help me navigate the path I had chosen! The thought that someone might be available to help me wasn't something I had even considered back then, regardless if someone was offering the service. I believed there was only one way to stop an undesirable habit, abstain!


Thankfully these days there are numerous coaches wanting to help people find freedom in their thoughts and fixations around alcohol. (I used to say relationship with alcohol, but I heard someone say today how can you have a relationship with an inanimate substance, it's really a relationship with your thoughts and beliefs about alcohol.)

A coach can shortcut the path for a client by helping a client understand what is really going on with alcohol. A coach doesn't teach or preach but quietly walks along side you helping you see the things that aren't apparent to you in the moment. Coaching is more about guidance and giving you a safe place to discuss what you are going through and what the way forward might look like. A coach provides you with sanity checks and accountability when you need it. Ultimately you make the connections and in the aha moments, decide on what the path looks like ahead. Rather than stumble along with rinse, repeat, recycle you can make headway with a coach.


You could read the same book I did and do it yourself like I did. Its interesting to note that a lot of members on the This Naked Mind community have read the book or have completed some of the free courses available. When I read a lot of their posts in the Community, the underlying theme still appears to be people are relying on willpower to get them through. There are a LOT of repeating day ones reported in the posts. The missing piece I think for most people is working on their subconscious beliefs. This is difficult to do in isolation but not impossible. A coach can certainly help with it, they are trained to help a person see what is not readily apparent and fast track them to a place where they can understand and counter any arguments their subconscious might be making.


Once the subconscious is aware of a belief that is no longer true, the belief has changed and with it, a change in how the person feels about their relationship with alcohol. When the person gets to the point where they feel they no longer desire alcohol they are ready for the next steps. If you really feel there is no desire, stopping the behaviour becomes much easier. You won't feel deprived or that you are missing out in all the ways we have been conditioned to use alcohol. Its recommended to try a longer period of around 30 days of life without alcohol in one's system to try out and test new found beliefs without fear of failing and being judged as somehow weak and undeserving of something new. What better place to test and learn new coping strategies than under the gentle guidance of a coach who has lived experience in breaking free from alcohol.


Since thoughts and fixations around alcohol occupy so much of our daily thinking, when we lose the desire for it we are often left with a void. It is important to fill this void with new activities and healthy coping mechanisms. Again, a coach can provide guidance on what new things might now be available to you now. Perhaps things that you once found enjoyment in as a child or once did as an adult but were gradually replaced by drinking activities. Activities that you thought you might try, but never had the time or the inclination to explore:

  • Embracing physical exercise, such as yoga or sports, can help release endorphins and promote a sense of well-being.

  • Pursuing creative outlets like painting, writing, or playing an instrument can provide a means of self-expression and serve as a therapeutic outlet for emotions.

  • Engaging in mindfulness practices, such as meditation or deep breathing exercises, can aid in reducing stress and promoting mental clarity.

  • Building a support network of like-minded individuals or joining support groups can also provide a sense of community and encouragement throughout the journey of maintaining sobriety.

By consciously replacing alcohol with these new activities and healthy coping mechanisms, we pave the way for personal growth, fulfilment, and a renewed zest for life. Walking alongside you is your coach, providing you with personalised support, encouragement and guidance every step of the way. An alcohol freedom coach understands the unique challenges and triumphs that come with reshaping your thoughts, beliefs and fixations with alcohol. With their expertise, they help you navigate the ups and downs of your journey, offering practical strategies, empowering insights, and tailored techniques to overcome obstacles and embrace lasting change. Your coach serves as a trusted ally, celebrating your progress, helping you build resilience, and holding you accountable to your goals. Together, you create a transformative partnership that fuels your personal growth, fosters a deep sense of fulfilment, and reignites your passion for life. With your coach by your side, you can confidently step into a brighter, alcohol-free future where you are in control of your choices, empowered to live your best life, and embrace a mindset that supports your overall well-being..


Thinking of moderating?

Get your FREE video masterclass here, "5 Essential things to know about moderation"







25 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page