This was originally posted for subscribers of the Everything List, where you get notifications of writing things, behind the scene things, and inside-my-head things that are not strictly (or always) sobriety related.
Extract from the book/secret writing project.
There’s no easy way to say it. If you’re reading this, then you have a voice in your head that says “Drink. Drink Now.”
Any time might seem like a good time to have alcohol. A vacation, wedding, funeral, a stressful day, a shitty argument with your husband. A ridiculous anus co-worker.
Or because it’s Tuesday. I mean, Tuesday is a good enough reason to drink, isn’t it? Well, it was for me.
There’s no easy way to tell you this next part either. But you’re still reading. So you know that what I’m saying is (possibly, maybe, probably) true.
I know of a way to get that “Drink now” voice in your head to stop. Yes. It’s true. I have found the cure.
Not only will this get the “Drink Now” voice to stop, but the cure will also cause you to sleep better, have less anxiety, spend less money, feel more connected to people. You’ll probably lose weight over time. You’ll travel with less jetlag. Your face won’t look so puffy. Your kids will be happy to hang out with you.
And you’ll be proud of yourself.
I’m not sure how much you’d pay for this cure. But here it is, I’ll give it to you for free: Want all that stuff up there, all those good things? Want the voice in your head to stop?
Just give up drinking alcohol. Entirely. One hundred percent sober. No sips, no one glass with dinner. Have none.
That’s the sound of you closing this book and putting it back on the shelf. You’re thinking “oh I so wish there was a way to have all those things – quieter head, spend less, sleep better, feel proud – but there must be some other way to have all that and still keep drinking.”
I don’t hear this voice so much any more, now that I have stopped.
But I need to keep aware that it can just be lurking.
I agree that self-compassion and love have helped me, too!
That voice. I honestly though everyone had that voice. And perhaps they do, but it clearly isn’t as harsh and critical as mine was.
Yes, was. It does Stop. In early sobriety Every day I had to assure myself (by reading a note I had written) that I was ok. That not drinking was the right choice. That it was enough.
And one day I believed it.
I used to think that voice was there to Hurt me, but I now believe it is my inner child. Looking for attention. And because she wasn’t getting it with love, she turned to hate. And got lots of my attention.
So, by showing myself love and compassion, I have appeased her. And now she is quiet. Peaceful, joyous and free.
Anne, well said. That voice wasn’t even always speaking, he was hanging around and when I was “done in,” would just walk me to that wine bottle.
Yes, I agree that this is the kind of post that should be read often throughout the different stages of the uh, sobriety journey. I’m on day 45 (can’t believe I made it) and I couldn’t get over the brooding cosmopolitan dame in my mind, the one that the pets wolf, being so miserly about not getting to drink anymore. A few days ago the voice was SO loud, but when the actual temptation presented itself, I automatically was able to say, “no thanks.” Even though it might feel like you’re not “doing the work,” you will be surprised at your own strength when you need it.
Nice insights. I do believe that self-love and compassion are key. And some nice treats help while the kind voice continues to grow stronger.
This is the second time i’ve read this entry and it resonates with me differently depending on the time of day. In the morning I am usually ready to give up drinking forever. Can’t even think why I ever do it, but by around 3:00 I start thinking what? How can a couple of drinks be bad. I’ve been doing it for years and i’m fine…aren’t I?? But then maybe i’m not. Because you are right. i keep reading your posts everyday as well as other sober bloggers and I think maybe that could be me too. Maybe I could get rid of this stupid voice in my head and live more tuned in to life. One blogger speaks of joy and happiness and peace in sobriety. I want that. But I keep giving in to the late afternoon voice in my head. How long, Belle, does it take for the voice to shut the fuck up!!
the first 7-9 days are the weirdest, and then it gets much better. those of us who are longer term sober only stay this way because it’s better : ) the voice needs to be dehydrated. more here. hugs hugs