Sober Sidekick, supports for a break from alcohol
On May 31st after yet another night where I thought, “oh if 1 drink is good, 3 is better, no harm in just one more,” that thankfully landed me in a friend’s spare bedroom I thought, enough is enough. While I was happy with myself for making the choice not to drive home I wasn’t happy with how many times I’d found myself in similar situations in recent weeks. So, because no time is really a good time or what feels like the right or convenient time to stop drinking, I decided - I’m starting tomorrow and I’m doing a 90 day challenge. As I’m not someone who’s ever great with absolutes, saying, “I’m never going to drink again” was not going to work for me and would only stress me out further. I decided I would stay open to the possibility that I may never want to drink alcohol again, that I’d maybe want to do for special occasions, or that I’d return to it but in a way that felt healthier now with the added perspective of distance.
Sometimes I forget I’m even doing a thing… And, honestly, feeling like I’m being denied something delicious doesn’t really even cross my mind anymore. This reaction is NOT the response I would have thought I’d have the beginning. As I examine the trajectory of what it felt like 10 days in (Will I ever stop wanting alcohol? How can I schedule my day and my social activities around alcohol) versus now that I’m reaching the end of my 90 days (I hadn’t seen a dear friend in a couple of months and my choice not to drink didn’t even come up in the conversation until the very end) - I’m amazed.
Other surprise and not so surprise benefits (check any of the instagram handles or hashtags as well running around there (some in resources below for more inspiration) that I have enjoyed:
- I don’t wake up anxious or with less than the optimal amount of motivation to start my day
I’m saving SO MUCH money - seriously each time I go out I’m probably paying half what others are paying
Never ever do I have to worry about whether or not I made the right choice by driving home
There are far fewer lapses in judgement, saying things I didn’t mean to say or thought were funny at the time, and far fewer memories lost as a result of late night rabble rousing
I’ve heard others see positive changes in their skin and weight. My face somehow always thinks I’m 13 years old inside so that one not so much for me but it bears mentioning ;)
Last night, like a lot of nights the last 80 days, I’ve been motivated to stretch before bed. I’ve also read, wrote, enjoyed the company of myself and others without being too tired or numb and just needing to go to sleep when I would get home after a night out.
*Let me be clear - There is NOT a one size fits all approach to choices around drinking and abstaining. What works for you is what matters and know that you can and will find supports regardless of the avenue you take.*
poppysol herbal supports + healthy lifestyle offerings
As I began to share my process with some close friends, more and more people kept expressing interest in trying something similar and then, in fact, they did try something similar. Some are committed to not drinking on weeknights, others are trying it out with their partner (a great idea for reinforcementand support) for one month. Each of them separately would ask me - “Hey - have you got anything herbal-y to help ease the anxiety that comes at times when you want to reach for a drink but now are having to make a new choice? Do you have anything that would support my system as I am taking a break?” And, as I try to do when the universe starts sharing things with me multiple times in multiple ways, I started to investigate - thinking - “Yes, I want to have that in my toolkit and I want others to have it too!”
And so, welcome to the toolkit - Sober Sidekick! The overarching goal of the Sober Sidekick tea and tincture is to support your liver as it resets and calm and tonify your nervous system that is used to reaching for a quick fix. The tea is delicious hot OR cold - perfect for any time of year. And both of these supports include healthy antioxidants, energy boosts, and antiinflammatory and circulatory enhancement to pump out what you don’t need and boost what you do!
I am so proud to share this new tea and tincture line with the community. Since starting my own journey of 90 days alcohol free I’ve had so many productive and thoughtful conversations with others about similar intentions. We recognized a gap and the need for supports as people make similar transitions and want to offer extra support to their mental, physical, and emotional bodies. My sincere hope is that this tea and tincture will do just that and will lift you up as you explore this important and honoring choice!
In your tea
- Green Tea - antioxidants, vitamin rich
- Holy Basil - relieve brain fog, soothes anxiety, uplifting
- Calendula - gut support, flower power!
- Lemon Verbena - soothe anxiety, digestive support
- Rosemary - circulation, memory boost
In your tincture
- Kudzu - decrease desire to drink
- Oats, Lemon Balm, Passionflower - calm, nourish, and support the nervous system
- Holy Basil - relieve brain fog, soothe anxiety, uplifting
- Turmeric - liver love, antiinflammatory, antioxidants, circulation support
Disclaimer - neither the tea nor the tincture are a cure or substitutes for seeking help and resources needed for addiction. They are plant based supports to be your sidekick on a larger journey.
Other dietary and lifestyle supports:
Know that anxiety and trouble sleeping will arise - why? Often because alcohol has been a stand in for helping people sleep and masking anxiety. So - prepare yourself ahead of time. Instill other nighttime rituals like reading a good book, taking a bath, putting some essential oils in a diffuser.
Put a generous squeeze of lemon in your water each day for ongoing detoxification
Eat colorful things
I’ve had many people say to me - "In that moment when you want to reach for the drink - what can you do instead?" Here’s my little go to list:
Get your heart rate up intensely
Take a walk in nature
Call / Text a friend
Have a go to replacement beverage - a delicious cup of tea, mocktail, green juice, bubbly seltzer with tincture or syrup dropped in to sip on instead
Recall your motivation - why did you want to start this process? Maybe it is for your partner, your kids, your parents, or yourself for a milestone birthday or vacation you have coming up - hold that in your mind
It’s important to create a supportive backbone daily that you will need that works for you throughout and beyond the immediate moment of drinking desire. I’ve found that instituting other healthy ritualized practices - daily meditation, even if it’s just 5-10 minutes, daily stretching or yoga (especially any kind of twists - they really aid in wringing out the internal organs and support detoxification), daily aerobic exercise - have all gone a long way in my supporting my process.
My story is only my story, the only one any of us can tell is our own. Please, if you need professional counseling or assistance, a formal detox, rehab, or 12 step program - seek that out for yourself or ask others for support finding the resources you need.
I’d really love to hear from you - if you’re walking a similar walk and want to share with others what has worked for you - please be in touch! If you want to try but are overwhelmed and want to talk it out - please be in touch! I feel the energy around this choice increasing these days. There is SO much support for a healthy lifestyle.
You are not alone. I wish you all the good health on your journey. Thank you for reading!
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Hotline - 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
Get Curious Podcast (“Why is Abstinence still being used to treat addiction?”)