In 2023, one trend stands out from the rest—and its actually worth following. And I’m damn excited to jump on this bandwagon.
No, it’s not TikTok.
Lately, it seems like everyone I follow and listen online has ditched…. drinking.
And as today marks my couple of weeks anniversary of being alcohol-free. Bravo to me, so I have decided to record this video to share my reasons and some back story.
I used to be a moderate drinker, like most of us, rarely exceeding two glasses of wine a day, maybe drinking two to three days a week. Practically nothing. Especilly when compared to my alcohol intake in my twenties and early thirties.
But over time, drinking with my wife turned into a monotonous routine rather than a celebration. We used to reserve opening a bottle of wine for special occasions, accompanying a nice dinner and the promise of a great, cosy evening.
Recently, though, I caught myself having a drink while on the phone, still dealing with work emails. We’d have a quick glass of wine, chat briefly, and then return to mundane tasks like cleaning or vacuuming. I didn’t like it at all.
Furthermore, I’ve come to realize that I don’t need alcohol to feel good. In the past, I would rely on it for courage, to get into the party mood, to fit in, or to forget my failures and bad experiences.
But now, with most things falling into place, I don’t have much to run away from. I find myself appreciating the clarity of my mind more than ever. Being in a drunken state has become a waste of time.
I can’t handle those brutal hangovers anymore. Back then, it didn’t matter as much because I didn’t value life like I do now. Every minute feels precious, and I don’t want to waste a single second.
There are still so many things I want to try, taste, and experience. I’ve been lost in the haze of drunkenness far too many times in the past. I don’t need to practice that anymore.
When I think about it now, it’s utterly insane. The social life, especially in Poland during the early 2000s, revolved around copious amounts of vodka and beer. Alcohol was everywhere, cheap and accessible. And we, young and brave, pushed the limits.
I remember being proud of my ability to down vodka straight from the bottle. With my friend, we could finihs a 0.5L bottle in under two minutes. We did it just before heading to the nightclub so we wouldn’t have to buy shots at the bar. And then, in the middle of the night, we’d do it all over again.
Alcohol shops were open 24/7, scattered all over the place. Access was never an issue.
During my university years, the ability to drink a lot could earned you star status. Those who couldn’t hold their drink would be ridiculed and laughed at.
There was this Thursday evening party we waited and prepared for all week. The doors opened at 10 PM, with the first hour offering free entry. We’d start at 8 PM, drinking in student rooms. Those who lost the ability to walk would be carried just to get the stamp for free entry. Then it was back to the room for more vodka or the infamous student mixcure of pure spirit, honey, and water.
The party wouldn’t end until the early hours, and many of us would head straight for Friday morning lectures. What the hell!
The drinking culture in Poland was insane, reminiscent of the days under Soviet rule when they knew that drunk and hungover citizens wouldn’t have the time or willpower to protest. That’s why alcohol was always available. You couldn’t find toilet paper or meat for soup, but you could always get a bottle of vodka.
I’m not sure if I’m ready for quiting drinking all together.
How will I meet up with my university friends without a few pints? Is that even possible? 😉
It may sound ridiculous, but I can’t recall ever going out with them, or anyone else for that matter, without alcohol being involved. It might be a challenging adjustment.
But I’ll deal with that when I’m in Poland. For now, I don’t have any immediate plans to visit. It’s quite easy here in Edinburgh, as we don’t go out often anyway, and the non-alcoholic beers are surprisingly decent. They do the trick.
I think I actually enjoy the taste of beer more than the alcohol itself, anyhow.
I won’t make any promises. I believe in moderation in life, and I don’t think a glass of wine every other week would do any harm. But from now on, for the foreseeable future, I’ll try my best to avoid it and see how far I can go.
It’s like experiencing things for the first time.
Going camping and sitting around the campfire without a sip of whisky will be an entirely new and exhilarating experience.
Going to the bar without a pint of lager will be refreshing.
Celebrating a birthday without a glass of wine may be challenging, but I believe it’s possible.
I haven’t even mentioned the massive health benefits. I didn’t quit drinking due to health scares, but I’ve definitely noticed improvements in my overall mood and recovery times.
So why this video?
Well, if you’re on the fence, if you’ve been toying with the idea of quitting or limiting alcohol, why wait?
Start today and let me know how it goes.