Stefanie Wilder-Taylor talks about the “trying to quit drinking” rollercoaster, and all the ways your brain tricks you to rationalize having a drink.
Stefanie Wilder-Taylor is an author, blogger and podcaster. She’s talked sobriety on Dr. Oz, Larry King Live, Dr. Drew, GMA, 20/20 and The Today Show. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and three sporadically charming children.
Here’s a very useful tool from Stefanie Wilder-Taylor’s recovery toolbox that helps nip those drink cravings in the bud.
What does hitting rock bottom actually mean? And do you definitely have to hit one to stop drinking? Well, let’s start with what it is: the dictionary defines rock bottom as the lowest level possible. This can mean different things to different people.
I thought there was no way that if people felt like I was feeling they could have stayed sober. Who could just sit with crazy thoughts coming a mile a minute, heart beating like a hamster and not take something to fix it?
It’s really easy to quit drinking. It’s the staying quit that’s the struggle.
For most people contemplating quitting drinking, a primary concern is how am I going to do the things I used to do sober? It can seem daunting to even sit on the couch and watch Netflix without a glass of wine in hand let alone go to a party and God forbid, socialize sober!
A funny thing happens when people quit drinking or even cut down significantly: other addictions tend to appear in their place. In recovery, we call this the Whac-A-Mole syndrome – named for the arcade game where you hit a mole over the head with a mallet only to have three more pop up until pretty soon you’re overwhelmed with moles and you just need a drink to calm down!
Before I quit drinking, I mean really quit drinking, I wasn’t convinced I needed to quit drinking. I thought maybe, possibly, there was a slight chance I should but I wasn’t convinced. So I found myself looking online at quizzes or lists of warning signs that could help me determine if I was truly an alcoholic or if maybe I was just drinking a little too much due to stress and didn’t need to quit entirely.
I quit drinking 7 years and 7 months ago or 2,791 days ago – but who’s counting right? A few days after I made the decision to stop, I wrote about it on my blog Babyonbored because in addition to having a problem with alcohol, I also have a tendency to overshare. In the entry, I explained how my favorite stress reliever, anxiety reducer and daily treat had become a nightly obsession.