How to Stop Drinking Out of Boredom

Reducing alcohol intake may produce withdrawal symptoms such as sweating,
shivering, high blood pressure, vomiting, fatigue, etc. Psychological
symptoms like anxiety, restlessness, &


outbursts, or irritability can be seen as an after-effect. If these
problems persist, professional help may be needed. A Qualified mental
health professional or psychiatrist can help and assist in managing these
symptoms. Talk to other family members and tell them of your boredom so that they can support and work with you in determining other paths to fulfillment. This might help to deter you from turning to alcohol or substance use in order for you to alleviate your own boredom in a self-destructive, detrimental way.

  • By putting a stop to boredom eating, you can retrain your stomach’s muscle memory so that it will send out signals of hunger and fullness much sooner and less often.
  • One listener described his realization to me that he’d been using alcohol as, quote, “a numbing agent.” And he told me not drinking made him kind of show up for his life, feel more present.
  • Drinking out of boredom is how some choose to deal with the dull moments life throws at us.

Regularly consuming alcohol when you’re bored has both short-term and long-term effects on your health, even if it doesn’t lead to a drinking disorder. People often use alcohol to enhance experiences, but this kind of drinking is problematic because it makes you dependent on alcohol to not feel bored or to have a good time. For example, most people drink at concerts, sports events or parties to transform their experience and heighten the moment. We go around on auto-pilot when it comes to certain patterns or behaviors. Stopping at the moment to look around at what’s happening, what emotions
you are experiencing, sensations, and thoughts that are present, bringing
awareness, and then making a choice.

Reframe Boredom as an Opportunity

That latter experience feeling like everything is gray and dull and lacks meaning? Dopamine is another neurotransmitter that is responsible for feelings of pleasure and happiness. It is also responsible for regulating movement and emotional response. Dopamine depletion can cause apathy, boredom, and lack of motivation. To unpack some of the underlying reasons you feel bored right now, it helps to understand what alcohol does to your brain. It’s pretty normal to reduce the entire experience of boredom in sobriety to missing alcohol and believing that getting drunk is the primary way you (and everyone else) have fun.

  • Often, it really comes down to being willing to do something that doesn’t entertain you or make you feel good immediately.
  • For resources related to AUD, including how to get support, please visit the NIH website.
  • I’m currently at work, and super tempted to pick up some drinks right now.
  • Carole Bennett, M.A., is a family substance abuse counselor, lecturer, columnist and author based at her Family Recovery Solutions Counseling Center in Santa Barbara, CA.

These are all things you’re trying to overcome from drinking. Sometimes boredom in sobriety looks like not wanting to be around anyone. Being drinking out of boredom sober doesn’t mean missing out on holiday festivities. The holiday season is a great time to make new traditions with friends and family.

Drinking Alone

Not all of those things are pleasant or enjoyable, but they need doing nonetheless. If you do it right, keeping a food journal can help you see what, when, where, and how much you are overeating. The right way is to write down the type and amount of food you eat, as well as the location and time. That way, you may be able to identify an eating style that needs correction. I encourage anyone in recovery to be open, honest, and willing to do the work.

Many people struggle with boredom drinking, but the good news is that there’s a way out. Moreover, outpatient rehab can prove to be the most efficient and practical treatment plan for individuals struggling with drinking out of boredom. Therapy and counseling can play a vital role in addressing underlying mental health issues that contribute to boredom drinking. Through counseling, you can gain guidance, support, and learn behavioral treatments to help you change your drinking behavior.

Everything you Need to Know About Alcohol Awareness in 2024

When you’re triggered by experiences like boredom or isolation, the accessibility of alcohol makes it that much harder to refrain from drinking to cope with these difficult feelings. For other people, drinking alcohol out of boredom is a much more active choice – they drink to cope with negative feelings like anxiety or loneliness. Many people say that they drink alcohol to manage anxiety – to numb it or take the edge off difficult feelings. Physical exercise and outdoor activities offer a great way to stay active, have fun, and improve your mental health.

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