Many people don’t dive right into binge drinking. It can start out as infrequent or moderate social drinking before eventually becoming heavier and heavier, and before you know it, your drinking can slip out of your control. What happens when you start to take back that control? That’s what One Year No Beer helps people do. Today’s guest is here to talk about the process of taking back control and how that feels.
Tom Kiely, of Western Australia, is a One Year No Beer member who has recently finished his 90-day challenge. In our conversation today, Tom explains some of the drinking culture in Australia. The legal drinking age is 18, and there is a heavy drinking culture where binge drinking and clubbing is common. Tom started drinking when he was 16, but got into it more heavily when he was 18 and at university, where weekend clubbing is more common. Eventually, he found that it had become more than just a social thing, and that he was drinking too much and sometimes even alone.
Tom describes feeling that he wanted to take back control over his relationship with alcohol. He discovered One Year No Beer through another podcast, and spent a lot of time looking over the website and considering whether or not he could commit to it. He describes worrying that if he wasn’t drinking, he wouldn’t be as social and would be thought of as boring. Eventually, he decided to take the plunge.
“I think the biggest thing early for me was just persistence.”
Tom describes the challenges and experiences that he had when first abstaining from alcohol. He says that he read books and articles to build confidence and willpower, and also that he found a lot of help and support on the One Year No Beer Facebook group and forums. He also explains that it wasn’t just getting help and advice from other members that motivated him. Realizing that he could contribute to the group as well by sharing his own experiences and advice was also helpful for him.
Tom talks about the way that giving up drinking made him feel. He says that he felt less anxious and more mentally healthy, and just happier overall. Tom works at the Department of Health by day, but is also part of a band, and he’s done at least 3 gigs during his 90-day challenge. Despite the fact that these gigs take place in environments where alcohol consumption is common, Tom says that abstaining, if anything, improved the experience, and his band released a CD during this period.
Having finished his challenge, Tom says he intends to continue abstaining for now. He says that he would like to pursue a Mastermind course and continue spending time in the ONYB forums contributing to the group. Listen to the episode to hear Tom’s full story.
LINKS & RESOURCES:
OYNB Website: https://www.oneyearnobeer.com/
OYNB Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Oneyearnobeer/
OYNB Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/199505820380513/
OYNB Twitter: https://twitter.com/oynbuk/
OYNB Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/oneyearnobeer/
TOM KIELY’S LINKS:
Tom’s Band, Patient Sixty-Seven: https://patientsixtyseven.bandcamp.com/
Patient Sixty-Seven’s Album, Four Walls: