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Alcohol Detox

Healthy Mind

Alcohol Detox: Accomplished

October 31, 2013

Okay, so if you are tired of hearing about the detox by now, you’ll be happy to hear that this is my wrap-up post. As of last weekend, the detox officially ended. I’ve already told you about a lot of the process in last week's detox recap: Using My Brain. But I thought it necessary to give a few last thoughts for a little closure on this adventure.

  1. Doing an alcohol detox was tough for me, but worth every minute if only to reset my body and mind, and to learn how to survive without it
  2. I don’t want to allow alcohol to become the source of a good time in any situation; rather, it should serve as a supplement to it (as in, taking an art class with a glass of wine vs. spending a Saturday bar-hopping)
  3. There’s no doubt that there is an inverse relationship between alcohol and productivity; as alcohol goes down, productivity increases
  4. With my determined/obsessive mindset, that could make for a lot of accomplishment
  5. Unfortunately, that same mindset is why I need to sit back and RELAX every once in a while (Frankie says RELAX)
  6. Detoxing called for a lot of restriction and holding back, which I think can be unhealthy in its own way
  7. Now that I am “back off the wagon” (kidding), it feels good to have my freedom back – and so far I’ve used it pretty responsibly
  8. I don’t need alcohol in my life and I can get by without it
  9. However, life is more fun when I don’t restrict myself. I am hard enough on Stacey as it is (yeah, I know I just talked in the third person). I’ve learned what I need to learn; now it’s time to let go and see where the lessons take me.

Already I can report that last Saturday, when it was finally time to party, I cut all my drinks with lots of club soda and made sure to hydrate (with water, genius!) in between drinks. I remembered every bit of my night, and woke up the next morning feeling tired, but alive. I even ventured out that day to try a new yoga class, meet a friend for brunch and take a walk around the city.

I believe that this detox was my own quirky way of hurling myself into this new stage of adulthood (fitting considering I’m turning 28 in two days). Gone are the days of binge drinking and massive hangovers. I just don’t want them in my life anymore. I would definitely like to throw in an alcohol-free weekend every month or so to see what I can accomplish with it. Wine and I are still good friends, though. And I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I am very glad to have it back.

Healthy Mind

Using My Brain

October 21, 2013

Okay, I think I’m starting to get it. Closing up on Detox Weekend #2 and I feel pretty awesome. You know why? Because I did things that used my brain. And that was more exhilarating than 3,000 bottles of wine. Over a span of two days I can proudly say that I painted my first work of art on canvas, made up an incredible spiced nut creation without a recipe, carved one adorable jack o’ lantern, listened to entrepreneur podcasts so I can figure out how to make this blog better, wrote a business plan, and took my first kickboxing class at the UFC gym.


Bears Painting


My Physical State:

  • Deep, uninterrupted sleep (Saturday mornings are even better with 10:30 bedtimes on Friday night)
  • Energized but achy (from a helluva kickboxing workout)
  • Better posture (possibly from being less tired)
  • Hungry (in that feeling good and alive type-of-way)
  • Lighter (I can’t prove that I’ve lost weight because I don’t keep track of my weight (it causes unnecessary stress), but I do feel lighter and tighter)

My Mental State:

  • Incredibly focused (on expanding my blog and creating a business)
  • Goofy (finding myself in spontaneous, goofy moods)
  • Appreciative (a clear state of mind made me that much more aware how much I enjoy the presence of the important people in my life)
  • Childlike (being in social situations without alcohol reminds me of being a kid again – I never needed a stiff drink to have an awesome time at a sleepover)

This epiphany is making me question a few things: Does alcohol give us an easy out? Because I’m finding, without it, I have to push myself a lot harder. You know, use my brain to come up with the activity, and my creativity to elevate the moment. Something to think about for the future…

Healthy Mind

Detox Weekend Recap

October 18, 2013

The Weekend + Living in Downtown Chicago – Alcohol = ? I am stumped on this equation. I want so badly to crack its code. But with one alcohol-free weekend down, I still don’t feel the answer is clear.

I had big, healthy dreams of checking accomplishments off my to-do list, setting new goals, having great conversations with a crystal-clear head and sweating out to hard-core workouts.

I’m sorry to report that none of this happened. However, I did notice a change in attitude as the weekend progressed.

Friday, with its end-of-the-week excitement, was by far the most difficult. What’s a Friday night without a little wine to take the edge off the week? Sunday, however, was a breath of fresh air. How awesome it felt to wake up early Sunday morning with a hangover-free head, motivated to tackle the week.

With that said, here’s what Detox Weekend #1 taught me:

  1. The perfect pictures in my head never quite play out the way I expect them to (BIG surprise). Just because I don’t drink, doesn’t mean I am going to be superwoman. I’m sure a clearer head helps, but it’s not the sole reason for procrastination.
  2. I can’t expect the transition from weekend drinker to Sober Stacey to be a walk in the clouds (at least right away). Being around people drinking is hard when you’re used to joining them. When your glass of wine is removed from your Saturday night, it feels a little bit like your teddy bear has been taken away. It’s a hard change. And that’s okay.
  3. If I want the rest of this detox to be successful, I have to know what I consider to be a successful detox. What do I want to achieve from doing this?

That last lesson is key. For all the time I spent obsessing about the idea of the detox, I never really determined my goals. 

Now that the next weekend is upon me, I am prepared. I started this detox to find out if I could do more without alcohol. Hypothetically speaking, could all of us do more? What could we accomplish, what could we discover and how could we feel if we removed alcohol from the equation? Expect a full report on Monday. But feel free to comment here if you think you already have the answer.

Healthy Mind

Detox Day 5

October 11, 2013

Five days in and I can confidently say that I woke up this Friday morning thinking…

  • My body feels like it has energy
  • I feel stable – mentally and physically
  • I’m anxious to get to work and finish a pending assignment

With that said, I couldn’t help but feel that something was missing in my Friday morning. Excitement. Usually I know that if I make it through the day, my boyfriend will be waiting with a glass of wine at home, followed by great conversation, and then a step outside into the city to meet up with friends at a bar or just hang out together and see where the night takes us.

These activities – with the exception of great conversation – will be difficult without a drink or two or three. And honestly, I’m a little down because of it.

I know, I know. It’s pretty sad if I feel that my weekend is ruined if I don’t have alcohol’s presence. Of course we tossed around a few ideas about what we can do instead of drinking – head to the movie theater on foot to enjoy the view on the way, go to a pumpkin patch tomorrow morning, workout – again.

I’m sure we’ll make it work. Possibly even really enjoy ourselves. And I can’t wait to eat my words later. But right now, my alcohol-free weekend is bringing my Friday morning high, down.

Does anybody have any great ideas for alcohol-free activities and things to do in the city?