No matter whether you are interested in giving an alcohol-free challenge a go, or you are in the early days of your journey, we have some great tips, advice and information for beginners!

Taking a break from alcohol has the potential to be one of the most exciting and rewarding challenges of your life. If you are considering embarking on this journey, we want to ensure you get the most out of this experience, so we have compiled some of the best resources, tips, tricks and instructions to help you maximise the beginning of your journey. 

So what do you need to know?

The OYNB challenge, while focusing on taking a break from alcohol, is about a lot more than changing your relationship with alcohol. We take a more holistic approach to wellness and behaviour change by unlocking all that an alcohol-free lifestyle has to offer. The benefits of a break from alcohol can impact almost every area of your life: from mental health; to sleep quality; to your wallet; and much more. If you put the work into this, there is no doubt you will begin to reap the rewards!

The OYNB challenge programme follows the MEND approach;Mind, Exercise, Nutrition and Do. This is a highly effective method of creating lasting behaviour change where the focus is on creating a lasting mindset shift that enables you to re-prioritse alcohol within your life, and replacing this with healthier habits. 

One thing that is important to remember is that this challenge will be unique to everyone – each person's triggers, motivations, hurdles and outcomes will be different. Depending on what your relationship with alcohol was like in the past, you may find it takes more or less time to rewrite new habits. This too is true for the length of time it takes to start experiencing the benefits of being alcohol-free, but be patient, as good things come to those who wait! If you are at all concerned about how taking a break from alcohol might impact your health, then please consult your GP.

How does it work?

If you sign up to one of the OYNB challenges, you will receive an email each day containing an inspiring video which outlines the lesson and activity for you to follow. Each should only take a few minutes of your time, but are designed to break down any preconceived notions you held about alcohol in the past, and educate you on the benefits of an alcohol-free lifestyle, all building towards making that all important mindset shift. You will also be able to access these videos within our members area at any time.

As well as following the challenge steps closely, we highly encourage you to join one of our online communities, as we have come to realise that community is one of the most important aspects of this challenge. You can either join us on Facebook, or you can find us on Slack. Here you will be able to share all the struggles and successes you experience along the way, mutually support others across the globe on a similar journey as you, and reinforce all the daily challenge lessons in practise. 

Some recommended resources

When you are looking to create lasting behaviour change, we would recommend going all in and exploring all the resources available to you to learn more about how alcohol impacts the body and mind, and how best to implement healthy habits throughout the day. We have a vast library of podcasts and blogs for you to check out, as well as some brilliant books from a variety of authors we would encourage you to read. 

Get started with…

Podcasts:

  1. Rising to the challenge with Drew Schapper
  2. The power of healthy choices with Dani Stevens
  3. Small changes, big impacts with BJ Fogg

For more entertaining and informative podcasts, check out our library here!

Blogs:

  1. OYNB Challenge: What do I do if I have a blip?
  2. What to eat when you go AF: the vitamins and minerals you need
  3. Habits: Breaking, building and maintaining them

For more insightful blog posts on behaviour change and lifestyle, visit here

Books:

  1. ‘Easy Way to Control Alcohol‘ by Allen Carr
  2. ‘The 28 Day Alcohol-Free Challenge‘ by Andy Ramage and Ruari Fairbairns
  3. ‘The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober‘ by Catherine Gray

Some top tips for beginners

If you are just getting started on your alcohol-free journey, there is a lot to look forward to in the weeks, months and possibly years ahead! Here are three of our top tips for the early days when you are getting started on your alcohol-free challenge!

Get involved, be engaged

One of the best things you can do throughout your challenge is to engage with the daily challenge emails and within the OYNB communities. This challenge was designed and developed to create long lasting change, but it only works if you put in the work. Take the time to complete the activities each day, and check in with the online groups – it need only take a few minutes! Keeping your mind focused on the end goal by engaging a little every day and surrounding yourself with informative resources will help to build towards your new healthier lifestyle.

Explore the AF options

As the alcohol-free movement gains momentum, the alcohol-free drinks market is growing and there are always new and exciting non-alcoholic options to try. While not everyone will find replacing their favourite tipple with an alcohol-free alternative works for them, this can be a very useful tool in the early days if you experience any cravings. These are also especially useful for social occasions when you’d like to have something in your glass – find out what your favourites are and make sure you have them available if you need them.

Keep a journal or take progress pictures 

Significant lifestyle changes can take time – and so too can any mental and physical benefits of making this change. This is why it can be useful and motivating to keep a written journal or photo series of your progress so you have a tangible resource to return to if motivation lulls. Write down how you are feeling, why did you decide to take this challenge? What do you hope to see? What are your short and long term goals around this? Over time, as you start to feel and look better, you can compare them to the beginning entries and see the vast progress you have made.  

We are here for you

If you take one message away from this – it is that OYNB is here to support you in your pursuit of a break from alcohol. If you have any questions, concerns – or you wish to share your progress, we want to hear from you. Feel free to email us at [email protected], message us on social media or speak to us within our online communities. This is a super exciting opportunity and we would love to follow along on your journey!

 

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