March 27, 2019, by Alina
What I learnt from being sober for 10 months
During my first year of University, many students began to participate in ‘Sober October’ as a way of giving their livers a bit of a break and doing a good deed for charity at the same time. However, I thought that I could use a challenge and really needed to get my head down for work so I chose to go sober from 1st February (the day after my birthday!) to December 25th (because who could hack a sober Christmas?!). It was a really interesting experience and I did manage to learn a lot, some of which I’ll list below! If you feel like you need a break from drinking for a little while then I would definitely recommend it – after all, what’s the worst that can happen?
This is quite an obvious one, but my favourite thing about my time sober was how much money I managed to save! By staying sober on nights out, I usually ended up only paying for the transport to get there and sometimes entry. My top tip is to order soda and cordial – soda is basically water which has been carbonated, meaning that bars will give you it for free and they rarely charge you for that extra 20p for the cordial! Who thought that it would be possible to stay hydrated during a night out?! Also, pints of coke/lemonade/etc cost a LOT less than your average pint, so those pub quizzes end up costing a lot less, too.
This one is definitely not a perk – it came as a surprise to me! Despite staying sober and hydrated on nights out, I still found myself exhausted the next day and almost ‘hungover’ which was highly frustrating! Turns out, a hangover is often due to a lack of sleep, so make sure to get a few extra hours in wherever you can so that you end up feeling almost as fresh as a daisy the next day. Also, I wouldn’t recommend drinking energy drinks throughout the night to keep you going at the same pace as your happy friends as you’ll only end up crashing later.
Fun fact – it is still possible to have a very good boogie without touching a sip of alcohol! Don’t get me wrong, there were still some hideously sticky clubs that I really couldn’t hack staying at because the atmosphere and drunk people were too unbearable, however, I still had many good nights out! Make sure you’re going with a nice crowd (i.e. people you can actually talk to and get along with) and try to find nights which are playing your favourite type of music. Once you have both of these things ticked then you can’t go wrong!
I found this to be the most entertaining element of my sober 10 months – the ability to remember everything from a night out. Sometimes, people would avoid seeing me the next day in fear that I had seen them do something ridiculous (I probably did), so be prepared for people potentially feeling very awkward around you the day after! However, although you might witness some hilarious/hideous moments on your night out (that you would have never otherwise paid attention to), it is always an advantage to have a sober member of the group to check up on people and make sure that nobody/nothing gets lost or in trouble! You might find yourself playing a maternal role at first, but at least you get to entertain yourself with memories that nobody else would remember 😉