Mindful drinking? What it means and how easy it is to do.

FINALLY – reducing drinking and even skipping the booze has become normal, with more
people than ever paying higher interest to living a healthy, wellness focused life. Longevity
has become more of a trend than jager bombs for some, which is great news for our bodies,
minds and livers.

If you still like to enjoy the odd drink on weekends, or if you find it hard to stay away from
the pub most nights after work, why not give mindful drinking a go? This approach to
drinking may reset your relationship with booze and help you appreciate the drinks you do
have, whilst waking up hangover free.

Mindfulness came from the Buddhist concept called “sati”, thought to develop self-
awareness and awakening through an understanding of one’s surroundings, feelings and
thoughts without judgement.
Linking this to alcohol, this gives us mindful drinking- the practice of being aware and in
control of why and how much alcohol you drink. What you drink, when you drink, who you
drink with all have a role to play in this.
Mindful drinking often results in a healthier relationship with alcohol and one’s self,
resulting in lower levels of consumption.

Plan ahead- Planning ahead is key when it comes to mindful drinking, taking your time to
plan out where you’re heading and checking out if they offer any decent low or no alcohol
options. This gives YOU the option if you want to drink or not. Setting yourself boundaries of
how many drinks you’ll have that night before you head out can lock down good intentions.
Even better, drive to the venue so you don’t even have a choice when it comes to drinking.
Include a ‘spacer’ between drinks – A spacer is a drink that contains no alcohol, that you
consume between drinks that do contain alcohol. Ideally this would be water, to help with
the dehydrating effects of the booze. The idea is that you stay hydrated and you slow
yourself down so that you don’t become intoxicated and potentially have to deal with the

Drink with your senses- When you do have that drink, try to use all senses to fully
appreciate every sip. This way, you’re less likely to chug down more than you planned, and
your satisfaction levels will be sky high.

Distractions- Think of other self care practices you could do, that don’t involve the wine.
This could be having a bubble bath, calling a friend, doing a workout or baking something
healthy you love. Find what works best for you and have a list of backups when the booze
craving hits.

Be specific – Just planning to drink less is too broad when it comes to drinking. With
Christmas around the corner, social events taking place, and after office drinks being back in
action try to set boundaries and be more specific in your goals. Allowing yourself to drink 2-
3 nights a week may work best for you, this makes it easier to control than counting units.

Overall, you’ll be feeling physically and mentally better the morning after practicing mindful
drinking. No sore head, anxiety, loose tummy, extreme thirst, fatigue or weakness- You’ll
also appreciate slowing down, savouring your drink and precious time with the people you

This mindful approach to drinking may just help you make the most of life’s other pleasures
too- but remember, don’t be too hard on yourself as everything in moderation is the
healthiest approach when it comes to enjoying yourself this year.