Healthy Living

Empty Nest? Empty Bottle? Change It!

It might have started as a way to keep your heart healthy, a glass of wine or a cocktail to stave off heart disease. Your doctor even recommended it! Then there was the suddenly empty nest and the need to fill in that drastic influx of extra time. So you started going out to dinner more often – sharing wine with friends – and finally getting to relax and live a little. You are finally free and can do whatever you want!

It’s easy to get caught up in the lifestyle that society and our culture tells us we should embrace. 50 is the new 30! 60 is the new 40! Seniors only cruises. Wine tastings. Why it’s almost like you’re in college again once you’ve retired or the kids move out!

Occasionally though, you might catch yourself thinking – it might be a little too much. It tends to sneak up on you. You realize that instead of just tasting that wine, you were chugging it. Maybe you got a little too loud and talkative at that last dinner party. You noticed the kids have made excuses to leave early the last few times they visited.

With everyone and everything telling us that we’ve just entered the prime of our lives, it’s no wonder that we can actually lose that freedom and control that we just entered into. It can be frightening to realize that you no longer feel in control of your relationship with alcohol. The stigmas attached to it alone can be isolating and drive you further into your descent.

It’s okay to realize that you might be drinking more than you’d like to. It doesn’t mean that you need to find a treatment facility and check yourself in today. You can change your behaviors and mindset towards alcohol by changing your unconscious mind. It sounds far-fetched but once you make that change alcohol won’t hold any appeal anymore. You won’t crave it, enjoy it or need it.

Currently your “unconscious mind” has been conditioned to regard alcohol as vital to enjoyment, relaxation, and social situations. Since our unconscious minds retain a strong desire to drink, trying to make a conscious decision to stop or limit alcohol consumption is often difficult or even impossible in some cases. Worse, that conflict between one’s conscious and unconscious mind creates an internal struggle – known as cognitive dissonance – which leads to pain and stress. Since many people drink to deal with stress, anxiety, and depression, a never-ending cycle of drinking can result.

Through Liminal Thinking you’ll treat the unconscious desire to drink, aligning that unconscious desire for alcohol with conscious desire. With the unconscious desire to drink removed, an individual is able to drink less, or stop drinking without any feeling of pain, deprivation or stigma. Liminal Thinking is a new approach that focuses on understanding how we construct and change our beliefs to help you gain freedom from alcohol.

Our experiences and observations affect our unconscious mind and our desire to drink. Since it is impossible to notice, experience, or observe everything, we unconsciously put our experiences and observations through a lens of relevance that is shaped by our personal needs. From these relevant experiences and observations we make assumptions, and from those assumptions we draw conclusions. From conclusions we form our beliefs. That in turn shapes our unconscious mind.

The unconscious mind isn’t logical – it’s all about feelings. In order to reshape it we need to disassociate the feelings we currently have about alcohol and embrace new beliefs.

You might think that you drink to relieve stress, to relax. Alcohol can’t remove stress though or make you relax. It is at best a temporary stop-gap. The source of your stress will still be there when the alcohol wears off. The only way to relieve it is to remove the source of discontent – not mask it. You might feel that you need alcohol in order to have fun, be happy. If you think back your memories of fun and happiness are not about the alcohol, they are about the people and experiences you shared with them.

We aren’t to blame for the beliefs we have regarding alcohol. Our culture is centered on alcohol and send us messages daily as to why it’s so wonderful and why we need it. Alcohol has been deemed a magic elixir and the cure for every ailment. It’s not surprising that it is predicted that 5 million boomers will struggle with dependence issues by 2020. If you’re interested in changing your relationship with alcohol I’d love for you to read my book, This Naked Mind, and let me know how it helps you gain control and find happiness.

By: Annie Grace

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