I didn't find the challenge particularly difficult as the benefits were apparent very quickly and I wanted to keep building on what I had achieved.

I joined OYNB after a culmination of events. I had witnessed the sad demise of a much-loved family member to alcohol. A daily drinker myself, I was taking medication for blood pressure, I was overweight and unfit, but still kidding myself I was fine.

I was totally inspired by the OYNB member testimonials coming through my Facebook feed and kept going back to read their stories and look at their pictures. I slowly started thinking ‘could I do this myself?’ The seed was planted!

I wanted to achieve what I had seen the others do. I wanted to achieve a sense of freedom from the fact that our society seems to be built around alcohol. It was everywhere, it was normalised, it was encouraged.

Starting OYNB

I began the 28-Day Challenge and put my first post on the OYNB Challengers page. Within a few minutes, it became obvious I was not alone in this. The messages and support were immediate. Having done the initial post in a supermarket car park prior to shopping, I found myself walking around that shop with tears streaming down my face at all the love and encouragement pouring through! It really strengthened my resolve and affirmed the decision.

My experience of the challenge

My partner continued to drink alcohol around me, to the same level that I used to, but luckily I didn’t waver. I felt like this was my decision and I was not expecting him to change without having reached that conclusion himself. We continued to go out to socialise. I was pleasantly surprised that all our local pubs had good stock of AF drinks and I found them (and still do) to be a tremendous help. I did not find the challenge to be particularly difficult as the benefits were very apparent, very quickly and I wanted to keep building on what I had achieved. Feeling great was the new addiction!

In terms of learning from this, the theme throughout has been that we all have a choice. I have become empowered by this knowledge and apply it to everything that I do now. I know that my choices, no matter how small, have an impact in how I feel mentally and physically.

The benefits of going alcohol-free

Claire after her challengeI was astonished to see my blood pressure had fallen dramatically within 2 weeks of starting my challenge, and since then I have continued to see and feel benefits. I have lost 16 kgs, my energy levels have surged, and I am finally maintaining a healthy weight. My skin is better, and I actually like the way I look!

I sleep 8 hours every night and wake up feeling great. I took the brave decision to leave my safe, well paid, great pension job to focus on my 2 businesses 6 months in. I had the assurance of a newfound clarity of thought, which gave me the confidence to do this. I am in control, I am accountable. I no longer want the lazy, easy option. I am excited by new ventures and wanting to learn. I have been astonished by how much time I now seem to have to be productive; the amount of time that drinking, or thinking about drinking, or preparing for drinking, or recovering from drinking takes up is crazy! I have learnt I will never waste my time like that again! My relationships with those around me have also improved. I am there 100%.

My energy levels have surged, and I filled the very significant gap that alcohol left with daily exercise. I started running, something I previously hated. I ride my bikes; I walk my dogs and I have started outdoor swimming. I go to the beach; I go to the mountains. I love it all and it is now very much part of my daily life. I am no longer on medication for high blood pressure. And this has all been because of one choice I made.

What helped me to succeed?

I found the advice to carry out daily journaling invaluable, particularly in the early days. The recommended reading lists were also incredibly helpful, as were the daily emails. I listened to audio books at night before bed and whilst exercising. Inclusion into the OYNB Facebook community was also incredibly helpful and motivational!

I do not miss alcohol at all. I have no intention of drinking alcohol again. I can see that it does absolutely nothing positive for me and my life is so much better without it, so my relationship with it has definitely changed. It’s gone!


Take the challenge


Pin It on Pinterest

Share This