Saturday, 15 August 2015

The 30 days teetotaler challenge

This week, albeit a short one, has just been insane. Getting hit on many fronts, plus executing current transactions, made for a pretty intense work week. Not to mention the day trip a couple of days ago. Day trip meant getting up at 0500 to catch the first flight out, and taking the last flight back, getting home only at 0130, and hit the restart button less than 6 hours later. A couple of times I felt like Gimli fighting against the hordes of orcs that were threatening to encircle and crush my soul, rendering my very own existence worthless.

But alas, I've passed through yet another week on the job battle scarred and weary, but more experienced and hopefully wiser. The best thing about this week so far is that I've actually managed to avoid taking in any forms of alcoholic substances, which was in line with the goal of going 30 days alcohol free. A bit of history of my alcoholic imbibing tendencies, I believe that ever since the summer of 2008, I've never gone more than a couple of days where I did not chug down a drink of sorts.

Since the summer of 2008, the most number of days where I've cut the booze out of my diet stands at hmm yeah probably a grand total of 5 days. This intensified when I started banking right out of school, with a bunch of colleagues hitting the last call at the office bar mid week to hang loose, unwind and de-stress, which frankly wasn't a great idea, because.... it solidified the habit of boozing. And you know, calories pile up and you start putting on the wrong kind of weight.

Mid week drinks soon turned into going all out partying on Friday night, where shit would get real with hard liquor such as vodka and whiskey. Pretty ashamed to say that I don't remember the conclusion of some nights. Granted, that was a few years past, and I've mostly cut out the weekday and going all out hard drinking on the weekends, I do indulge in social drinks at least once or twice during the weekend. Red wine, white wine, dessert wine, whiskey, vodka, craft beers, shit beers, gin, liquor (Campari, Pimms, Choya, Baileys, Amarula etc), you name it, I love it, and there seems to always be an occasion on the weekends to indulge in them.

I've noticed over the last couple of months a general retardation in my mental capacity. A dulling of the senses. Could my brain cells be dying? Alas, might it be a result of the sustained drinking through the years? Alcohol, after all is a depressant and I do notice the feeling of general retardation occurs when the week kick offs, after a weekend of taking in drinks. Perhaps it might be because work is a non-callable non-redeemable perpetual bond that pays suck all in interest, but yeah there should only be one way to find out - to undertake a challenge to reboot the system. That meant that I mindfully decided to cut out the drinking from Monday (10 August) for next 30 calendar days. This experiment would end on Tuesday (8 Sep).

Some quick thoughts over the last couple of days. It felt strange not indulging in a beer on the flight back home and during dinner last night. Instead, I had hot chocolate and a coconut during those occasions respectively. Strangely, I'm beginning to feel more aware of my senses and focused as I bang this piece out before heading for my next activity during the weekend. It did feel, and will probably feel a bit strange over the weekends (at least the first two or three I think) not taking in at least a couple of beers or glasses of wine, but I do hope that I'll get some good feedback from under-taking this challenge, and perhaps develop some of my lost mental acuity and resilience levels at the same time.

 Wish me luck!

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