After a long day at work, you’re itching to get your hands on one of the cold beers in the fridge.
You race home, fling open the door and then remember something: your new year’s resolution was to take part in Dry January.
The 31 day challenge of being alcohol-free has been set by national charity Alcohol Concern and Cancer Research UK to encourage a healthy start to the new year.
And whilst the thought of getting through January blues without a glass of wine or two fills many people with dread, here are our top survival tips to get you through the month.
1. Try and meet friends away from your usual drinking haunts
After work cocktails at a bar and a few pints in the pub quickly becomes the norm, but this will make it harder for you. Instead, try and meet up in coffee shops, or check out new cafes or restaurants you’ve been meaning to go.
2. Treat yourself to the finer things in life
Go for dinner at that top notch place you’ve been meaning to, or buy yourself the winter jacket you like towards the end of the month. You’ve earned it from the money you’ve saved.
3. Experiment with mocktails
If it’s the taste you miss, it’s not all juices and lemonades. Most bars have a list of mocktails which are cheaper than cocktails and taste pretty good. By the end of the month, you’ll be an expert in flavours you would never have put together.
4. Find a Dry January partner
Everything is easier when you can share your woes with someone. Those who aren’t embarking on the challenge can only hear you complain so many times before they put a beer in your hand and tell you to relax. Find someone who is starting a healthy eating regime or taking part and keep each other motivated.
5. Do something productive you’ve avoided last year
So you were being nagged to put things in the attic and sort out the garage. Now is the perfect time to get in the family good books and the reason is you’ll be feeling super productive. Lack of hangovers and overall health improvement means you can enjoy a fitter body.
6. Have a busy January
The best thing to do when you dwell on something, be it a diet, an ex-partner or Dry January is to keep busy. Make a list of places you’ve wanted to visit, or find out what’s on in your local area. There will be something going on to take your fancy and if you’re too busy laughing at Anchorman 2 at the cinema or stretching at pilates, you won’t be thinking about drinks.