So you decided to make it a liquor-free January and put the wintry cocktails or hot + boozy drinks to rest for 30 days. Cheers to that! And, hey, we know sometimes this can feel harder than a cat doing yoga (but really though), so we’re all the more proud. To make your spirits-free days still feel merry and bright, we tapped Lisa Hayim, registered dietitian and founder of The Well Necessities, for her top tips to stay a little… well, more spirited.
1. Go ahead, order a drink. “Just not an alcoholic one! The hardest part of being at a bar is being badgered by others to drink. If you have something in your hand that you’re sipping on, no one will be asking questions. Use it as a time to hydrate. Try water with lemon or club soda,” Hayim suggests. When you’re at home and your roomie or partner pops a bottle, try one of these spirited, wintry mocktails and imbibe blissfully.
2. At dinners, sip on some tea. Just because you’re not drinking for a month doesn’t mean you’re about to avoid your friends and social gatherings until February. “True story: This time of year can be stressful, whether with family, friends or coworkers. It’s easy to order another glass of chardonnay, like everyone else. Instead, find out what herbal teas the restaurant has and sip calmly throughout your meal,” suggests Hayim. Who knows, you may discover a new obsession with ginger tea.
3. Keep a food and drink journal. “Writing everything you eat and drink down makes you more accountable. You may think, ‘Oh, well. It’s just one drink, it doesn’t matter and doesn’t count.’ But when you go home and write it down, you’ll get a reminder. Food journals have been very successful in helping people lose weight, simply because it requires you to face your actions and yourself. If you drink it, you must write it down,” advises Hayim. No excuses!
4. Drink some non-alcoholic beer. “Do you like a little something with dinner? ME too. Most restaurants carry at least one nonalcoholic beer. Always ask the waiter to check,” recommends Hayim. “While the taste is slightly different, it pairs deliciously with food and helps you feel like you’re not deprived.” Not feeling deprived = month’s goal right there.
5. Do it with a buddy. “Doing it with a friend allows you to maintain sociability and normalcy. Instead of happy hour, the two of you can head to the gym together. Plus, having someone that can relate holds you to your resolution to stay dry and makes you less likely to fall off the bandwagon,” explains Hayim.
6. Plan a post-brunch workout class. “Everyone at brunch is sipping on bloodys and mimosas, laughing and having a good time. You want to join in. But you don’t. Why? Because you have already paid $30 for your 3pm spin class. Having something planned (and paid for) right after makes you less likely to plunge into the alcohol,” suggests Hayim. So grab your non-drinking buddy or boo and plan a creative workout!
7. Volunteer to be the DD. Your friends will love you allllll month long. And we know the drill: “Being the designated driver means you have decided to be sober for the night. Choosing to drink later in the evening will not just affect the safety of yourself, but may also hurt others,” says Hayim. Besides, it’s the perfect excuse to put together that new Bey playlist for driving.
8. Say cheers to mocktails. “Show people you can still be social by hosting a party at your house. You can offer alcoholic beverages as well as mocktails for others partaking in the dry festivities! Try this coconut, cucumber and mint mocktail: combine four cups of coconut water, two cucumbers sliced thinly, one-half cup of fresh lime juice and one-fourth cup of chopped mint leaves.” Add some ice and get sipping. Best of all: no hangover included.
9. Reflect. Unfortunate but true: “You may get some backlash from your friends or people you meet while out for not drinking. They may consider you ‘boring’ or even stop inviting you to parties. This can be a painful reality as to the type of people you surround yourself with and their inability to be social and interact without a drink. Keep doing you, you’re growing up!” Hayim reminds us.
Tweet @BritandCo and tell us: Are you participating in “dry January?”