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How To Keep Your Mind Off Alcohol Once You Are Sober

Updated on September 18, 2013

Once an alcoholic makes up his or her mind to surrender to their addiction to alcohol, many times in their life alcohol will come back into their minds.

I will try and give you some pointers on "how to keep your mind off alcohol once you are sober." These pointers or tips are from my own experiences since I became sober in October of 2009, and I use these everyday of my life when that urge or temptation to drink comes into play.

When alcohol has been such a huge part of ones life for many years, it is very hard to get over leaving that addiction behind, although for myself I just think of all the bad things alcohol did to me and my family, and that alone puts a stop to that urge or temptation to drink. I believe a lot of it has to do with your mind, even though an addiction is so powerful many people are not that strong and full of willpower to just say no.

I was one of those people that just could not say no. The longer I drank the more I needed that poison in my system. I admit that I was weak and never had enough willpower to beat my demons that ran my life for so many years.

I am sure many of you feel the same way, that you were weak to stand up for your own life and say NO to the addiction that would slowly take over your life and in the end kill you.

I Would Give Anything - But I Won't

I would give anything, but I won't, to sit down in a bar and put alcohol to my lips and have those long conversations with my old drinking buddies. Those thoughts passed through my mind many times in the last four years of my sobriety, but I know if I did something such as that, it would be the end of my recovery, and my sobriety. I would have to start all over at square one, and day one of trying to get and stay sober again.

All of my hard work and determination to stay sober would be all in vain, not to say how disappointed I would be in myself for being so weak, and not having the willpower to say NO to the demons that were knocking at my door.

If you have changed your life and now are sober, does alcohol ever come back to haunt you?

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Keeping Alcohol Off Your Mind

When the urge or temptation to drink alcohol comes over me, here are a few things I think about to get my mind off of alcohol.

  • I think of all the bad times I had while drinking.
  • I think of all the nasty things I said while being drunk to family and friends.
  • I think of how miserable I was being addicted to alcohol.
  • I think of all the money I spent on alcohol instead of my family needs.
  • I think how horrible I was looking all because of alcohol and the damage it does to the body.
  • I think of all the things I missed out on because I put alcohol in front of everything.
  • I think of all the times I stayed home when invited to a family function because there was no alcohol being served.
  • I think of how many times I acted like an ass because alcohol was making me do and say things that I wouldn't ever do or say if I were sober.

Here Is The Lady (My Wife) That Saved Our Marriage And My Life

Keep Body And Mind Busy

You need to keep your body and mind busy when you are in recovery so that you keep your mind off alcohol. This works for me and I hope it works for you as well.

Everyone has different ways that they cope with keeping their mind off alcohol. Keeping busy works for me!

Everyone that has become sober will have times in their recovery that they just wished they could have that one drink. I know for myself, it has happened to me more than you could imagine, but I never broke and took that drink.

For example: My daughter got married last year, and my wife and I helped to pay for the wedding, the reception, and all of the alcohol that was going to be served at the reception. I stood and watched everyone having drinks to celebrate my daughters wedding and new life with her husband. I didn't even have Champagne for the toast. I drank water and coffee the entire evening, when I could of very well drank alcohol, after all, there was loads of alcohol at that reception. My mouth watered for alcohol and as I watched everyone getting drunker and drunker and having a good old time. I then thought to myself, "I am having just as much fun, and even more being sober!" The urges to drink will pass if you hold off and give it time. That is what I did, and I was good for the entire night and thanked myself for not giving into the demons that were calling me.

As I said in many hubs and articles I have written, "I made a promise to myself four years ago when I stopped drinking alcohol, that I would never touch another alcoholic drink for the rest my life, and I am not that kind of person that breaks promises, especially to myself."

I am no different than anyone else. I have problems just like the next person, and I was so used to drinking alcohol to try and solve those problems just like you do.

I have learned since I have been sober that drinking alcohol to solve life's problems never worked and never will! I never knew that until I became sober. In fact, alcohol just made those problems bigger than they really were. I am sure you can relate to those words right?

As I stated above, think about those things that haunted you while you drank and abused alcohol and I bet you won't pick up that drink ever again, unless you are glutton for punishment.

It will get easier as time passes in the recovery process, although we will always be in recovery, and we will always be named an "alcoholic" until the day we die. It is a sad thing and something I am not proud of at all, but I made my bed and now I must lie in it.

The word alcoholic seems like such a harsh word, but lets face it, we were addicted to alcohol on our own choice, and alcohol did run our lives for many years until you and I smarted up and beat our demons and surrendered.

As far as myself, I have been sober since October 27, 2009 and although many times I wanted to drink alcohol, but inside of me say NO, Don't Do It!. I listened to my heart and soul and didn't listen to the demons that were hounding me to drink alcohol and ruin my life even more than it was almost ruined four years ago.

These demons will always be with us, but the thing is not to let them win your body back again.

Stay positive, stay determined to keep sober forever, believe in yourself and love yourself enough to say NO to the urge and temptation to drink when it comes over you.

You can keep sober, I did, and I will be sober till the end of my time here on Earth. I'd rather be taken to heaven by natural causes then die from an alcohol addiction that could of been totally avoidable just by being strong and learning to say NO I don't need that poison to have fun in my life.

Don't Leave This Beautiful Earth Because Of An Avoidable Addiction


© 2013 Mark Bruno


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    • the clean life profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Bruno 

      4 years ago from New Jersey Shore

      Michele First I am so sorry for such a long delay in replying to your kind comment. I am truly sorry. Lots going on with my job and family, so it is the first time I have been here on Hp for a while. Thank you for the info on CR. and congrats to you as well on 12 years sober . Great job and keep it up too. I never realized how great life is with out alcohol in it.

      I went cold turkey on October 27th 2009 and have never touch a drop since. I was a bit afraid to do that without professional help to detox, but I took a huge chance and I made it alone. I write on so many sites regarding alcohol addiction including my clean life blog.

      I have over 400 hubs here and articles all over the place (yahoo..etc) in hopes I will touch someones life and make them realize there is life after an addiction.

      God Bless you Michele and thanks again for the info !!!

      All the best to you,


    • misslong123 profile image

      Michele Kelsey 

      5 years ago from Edmond, Oklahoma

      I really admire your resolve to stay sober. I have been clean and clear for 12 years now. I was an alcoholic as well. I have not had a chance to read over your other hubpages yet, but I am very impressed with your dedication to this specific topic.

      Have you ever heard of Celebrate Recovery? You can research it online if you have not. They may have meetings in your area. It is well worth going. It is basically a Biblical approach to AA. They follow the same steps, step studies, testimonies, etc. The one I go to has a one hour dinner with other addicts (addicts can be more than just alcohol - drugs, sex, depression - pretty much anything) for only $3.00! Not bad for a home cooked meal with others who are just like you and don't judge.

      Then, they have a one hour large group - either focusing on someone's testimony or one of the 12 step topics and how to conquer it. Next, they have a one hour small group that breaks everyone up (men vs. women) based on what they are there for. Finally, they have approximately an hour of a dessert time where everyone can chat and make new friends. The group meets once a week.

      Anyway, I just wanted to share that with you. Even if you can't go to Celebrate Recovery in your area, you should check out their website. You could order materials, read about the organization, read testimonies, and get encouragement. I'm not "advertising" or "being promotional;" I just know CR helped me a lot (along with AA), and just felt compelled to share it with you in case you didn't know about it.

      It's nice to find a fellow recover-er. Life isn't easy, but if you do your best to stay away from people who drink (I can smell it on their breath and clothes), you can succeed. It sounds like you are on the right track. Great job, keep at it, and don't ever give up! If you slip, it's not the end of the world. Just hop back on the horse. :)

      I look forward to following you and reading more of your great hubs. Sorry for the rambling; I just really admire your strength and power!


    • the clean life profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Bruno 

      5 years ago from New Jersey Shore

      mcrawford76 - First off a HUGE Congrats to you for 8 years of sobriety. Although you may of slipped one or twice, but the big thing is that you got back up and brushed yourself off and continued on your journey of recovery.

      You are so right, everyday is a struggle although some days are better than others. The key is to stay strong enough to stay sober and make it a life time of sobriety. When I stopped drinking Oct. of 2009 I made a promise to myself that I would never touch a drink of alcohol for the rest of my life no matter how bad or good life is, and I will never break a promise to myself that's for sure.

      All the best to you my sober friend!!


    • mcrawford76 profile image

      Matthew I Crawford 

      5 years ago from Greeley, Colorado

      Epic piece - really nailed down the daily struggle. As a recovering alcoholic myself for 8 years now, it's still a struggle. Every day, almost every hour having to CHOOSE not to drink. I've said from the beginning that you have to make that choice at every turn, without that you will fail, and i've had a couple slips over the years, but they were just that slips, never allowing myself to go back down that road again.

      P.S. my release and my distraction is my poetry

    • the clean life profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Bruno 

      5 years ago from New Jersey Shore

      Crystal - thanks for stopping by and commenting. I sure hope this and my other hubs are helping those that are suffering from an addiction.

      Thanks for the Vote Up, awesome,beautiful and sharing too. I really appreciate it!


    • Crystal Tatum profile image

      Crystal Tatum 

      5 years ago from Georgia

      Fantastic advice for anyone suffering from any addiction. Thanks for writing this one. Voting up and beautiful and awesome and sharing.

    • the clean life profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Bruno 

      5 years ago from New Jersey Shore

      jpcmc- Thank you for reading and your comment. You and your wife were very wise not to drink alcohol and to drink the non alcoholic drinks. Stay clear is the best thing that's for sure.

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 

      5 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      Congratulations for having the will to do the right thing. It's hard, but with the right people around you the burden becomes easier. When I got married, my wife and I did not drink any alcohol. We had a toast, but we used non-alcoholic beverages. The rest had their alcohol fill, but we stayed clear of it.

    • the clean life profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Bruno 

      5 years ago from New Jersey Shore

      cam8510 - Thanks for your comment. Don't drink is great advice, but I don't know about the marriage thing lol. i have been married for now 31 years and believe me, it was a rough road through the years, But it was all my fault because of me drinking too much. When that right person comes in your life you will know it. I dated for only 3 months and been married 31 years.

      Take care and don't drink as I will not either forever!


    • the clean life profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Bruno 

      5 years ago from New Jersey Shore

      srsddn - Thanks for reading and for your comment. It is a tough road, but I will prevail and will never let my life go back to those horrible days of addiction. Thanks for the Vote Up and it's nice to meet you as well!

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 

      5 years ago from Flagstaff, AZ

      Whenever I am going on a trip, my sponsor says, "Don't drink and don't get married." Well, so far I've taken his advice. I almost screwed up once. I got temporarily engaged. Good hub, Mark. I always appreciate the good reminders.

    • srsddn profile image


      5 years ago from Dehra Dun, India

      thecleanlife, It requires a bit of determination to think and them implement. Your keeping body and mind busy during your daughter's marriage is a great example how to do it. Thanks for sharing your ideas. Voted up!

    • the clean life profile imageAUTHOR

      Mark Bruno 

      5 years ago from New Jersey Shore

      Bill, your sponsor was dead on. I know the temptation is so hard, but if you or I would take that first drink it would be over for me, that's for sure, so to solve that problem I just say No thank you to all those that offer me a drink and proud to tell them I don't drink. It's a great feeling isn't it Bill to say those words.

      God Bless you and yours my dear friend


    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      My first sponsor told me if I wanted to stay sober it might be a good idea if I didn't take a drink. LOL Seems like a lifetime ago. Great points made from a man who knows what he is talking about, Mark.

      blessings to you and yours



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