Stop Drinking During a Crisis

A person in a white shirt using a laptop computer. Their body language conveys a stressful situation.

Drinking alcohol is a crutch that’s popular around the world. Dealing with the stress of modern life is usually all we need to crack open a bottle. In the current state of heightened anxiety, stress and uncertainty I’ve been seeing a lot of reference to “numbing the pain” or “drinking away the problems” as a socially acceptable way to cope with these trying times.

A mantra I’ve developed over the years that has helped me with stress and anxiety is simple:

No matter how bad things are, being drunk certainly won’t make things any better.

So it isn’t exactly eloquent, but it’s true. Saying something to that effect out-loud helps me remember all the times I THOUGHT I was drinking my worries away, only to have them waiting for me when I woke up. The thing is, they are still waiting for you when you wake up, and now you have to deal with your problems with a hangover.

Another great way to re-frame your situation is to think about how alert, attentive and available you will need to be as the crisis may worsen. People who have jobs that are “on-call” can’t drink in case they are called in, and some jobs won’t even let you get drink 24 hours before your shift. These are usually first-responders, but just imagine how much more difficult a bad situation would be if you’re suddenly called to help someone, or need to act fast in a pinch.

We all deal with stress differently, and with current social distancing efforts it seems impossible to get to a meeting. Thankfully AA Intergroup has online offerings https://aa-intergroup.org/directory_chat.php

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