How to Stop Drinking Out of Boredom

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In response, some people seek outlets that are detrimental to their well-being. Drinking out of boredom is common, especially among those suffering from other mental health conditions like anxiety and depression. On the one hand, you have no idea what you’re supposed to do with yourself.

As a kid, whenever I was bored I would read a book, look for friends to play with, go for a walk, or make up my own games such as kicking rocks on the ground to see how far they could go. Today as an adult, I still find myself feeling bored sometimes, but I have a different approach to boredom, and a different philosophy on what boredom is. If someone expects that every Friday night they should be out on the town with friends, but they’re alone on a couch, it may be easier to justify boredom and self-pity, followed by booze. Managing our expectations can relieve boredom as well as the unhealthy compulsions to relieve it. But these judgments that we can make about ourselves are rarely fair or accurate. Instead, try to reframe times of boredom as opportunities to do the meaningful things you’ve not had time for until now.

Alcohol didn’t make life fun. It just made you not care.

If some urges seem to pop up “for no reason,” it might be because there was nothing else in those moments to occupy your mind. In this article, we’ll unpack bored drinking and help you figure out whether boredom is a drinking trigger. Then we’ll show you how to better manage boredom and avoid unhealthy drinking patterns. If you know you will feel lonely or down, try and plan some interactions to reduce those feelings and your reliance on alcohol. When you remove all alcohol and addictive substances from your home, you can experience the emotions and thoughts that lead to drinking out of boredom without acting on them in a way that puts you at risk. Anything to change up that routine of drinking out of boredom and make it harder for drinkers to find a place to get comfortable.

But for many people, lingering feelings of anxiety, depression, and general malaise can last weeks, months, or even longer. Skip the Monday blues and give a big hello to Primary Therapist at Lantana, Chip Eggleton, on this #MeetTheTeam Monday. Chip was inspired to pursue a substance use disorder treatment career after his drinking out of boredom experience with the recovery community. Connecting with a support group can also help you build meaningful relationships with people who understand and can support you in your recovery journey. Planning interactions according to “Sober in Seven” can help reduce feelings of loneliness and prevent reliance on alcohol.

Short-Term Effects

Typically, whether they’re aware of it or not, there was a thought or a sequence of thoughts that preceded this outcome. That’s worrying because self-medicating feelings of boredom with alcohol can invite health problems. Drinking substitutes alcohol for other forms of stimulation that are better for health and fitness, and, in some cases, it can escalate into alcoholism and require professional detox and treatment.

It’s a way to care for yourself by committing to a practice that releases positive, mood-enhancing endorphins and alleviates stress. Finding a new activity and hobby such as working out can provide something to look forward to each day. If you’re not able to take a walk, you might find it helpful to take a few minutes to stretch or do breathing exercises.

The Role of Habit in Boredom Drinking

Alcohol merely blurred my perception of social situations. Sometimes we would watch a show, but even that become untenable for me after a couple of drinks because I did not have https://ecosoberhouse.com/ the attention span for it. This is important to remember when thinking about boredom. Unstructured time leads to unpredictable behaviors, which are problematic in recovery.

drinking out of boredom

Staying busy is a great way to stave off boredom and create space for healing the parts of your brain that took a walloping from drinking. It’s particularly therapeutic to find something to do with your hands. Your friends are out getting drunk, the same as they always do. Meanwhile, you’re at home wondering how many days it would take someone to find your body after you’ve choked on those peanut M&M’s you’ve been knocking back during your latest Netflix binge. When you remove alcohol from your life, you free up all the time you spent drinking and recovering from drinking.


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