January is a great time to take a break from the booze. For many of us, dry January is something undertaken as a penance for overindulging during the holidays. We batten down the hatches, clear our social calendars, and pray for February to come swiftly.
But I see things differently. After we both experienced the drastically positive impact going alcohol-free had on our lives, my friend Ruari Fairbairns and I started OneYearNoBeer. Having helped many thousands of people take breaks from booze through 30-, 90- and 365-day programs, we've discovered that you actually have nothing to give up and everything to gain.
What we've learned is that giving up alcohol is a keystone habit. A keystone habit is one that unlocks your full well-being potential. Just a few of the benefits of going alcohol-free, such as extra energy, motivation, vitality, productivity, money, and time, will begin to pave the way to the life you always dreamed of.
Relationships blossom, tempers are less frayed, and business often booms when alcohol is no longer impeding you. Morning-after anxiety disappears and is replaced by consistent inner calm. Exercise routines become more productive—and even enjoyable—which leads to healthy, lean bodies. It is this upward spiral of alcohol-free thriving that provides the leverage you need to go after your dreams and achieve your goals.
Below are our top 10 tips for surviving and thriving during your first (or second or third) alcohol-free month. Most of the benefits mentioned above happen somewhere between 40 and 90 days. So, if you want to get the most out of your efforts, stick with 'em!