As I’m progressing in my non-alcoholic journey (at least 240 days sober), my eyes open up more and more.
I am seeing and hearing things that I don’t yet fully believe.
As I’m experiencing more and more parties in which I stay sober, my mind grows accustomed to this new, clearer state of being.
I am sitting in the same bar again, met a guy from way back. He also stopped drinking.
We had a conversation about how when you stop drinking, you become less self-consciousness.
Funny, because you started drinking to become less self-conscious and more outgoing. Turns out it was working against you.
It turns out that when you lift the veil and look at yourself you realize don’t need alcohol to have a good time.
Drinkers will agree with this. “Of course I don’t need alcohol to have a good time!” But they will continue to sip their gin tonics and talk endlessly how they are not there yet, that to not drink you have to be strong, and that they’re not strong yet like all the top sportsmen who work out daily and don’t drink. But they’ll get there someday, they say, as they sip their GTs and continue talking to fill up the silences.
It’s so easy. If only I had started this journey earlier.
I was at a party in The Hague. The host asked a group of people whether it was possible to have a genuine emotional connection with someone while drunk. I thought for a while, and in my personal experience my emotional connections have improved somewhat since I stopped drinking. I am more able to distinguish between a drunk exchange of words, which are fueled by what seems a lack of inhibition, and true uninhibited levelling of minds.
For example, I had lunch with this girl who’s having issues concerning her family, and she asked me what to do about it. I told her an anecdote from when I was having arguments with my mother, that I tried to take a step back, try to distill her arguments out of what she’s saying, realize what my own arguments were and propose a middle ground, a golden solution where every party wins a bit but possibly loses a bit. It has worked very well as long as both parties uphold their agreement.
So I told that to this girl, and she implemented my solution. When I asked her about it afterwards, she said she thought it seemed to work.
I think that my anecdote touched her on a personal level, which she was able to attain because she was sober at lunch. She’s not the type who drinks, anyway. So to answer the question “Can you have a true emotional connecting with someone while drinking” I’d say “It’s easier from both sides and more true when you’re sober”. My explanation is that drinking grabs you and pulls you out of your balanced state of being in which you have to be in order to listen attentively, which is one of the cores of a good conversation.
I also had a conversation with a Spanish woman who told me (drunkenly) that she didn’t like people who don’t drink at all, because they are pushing it to the extreme. Well, sometimes it pays off to be extreme. If you want results in the gym, better hit it every day. If you want an academic career, hit those books every day. If you want to lose weight, eat less every day. If you want a clear mind, stop drinking every day. So I listened to this woman and after hearing her out decided I am going to disregard her opinion.
I hit the gym 3 consecutive days and am eating better. It’s awesome to what limits you can push your body and what results you’ll see when you look at yourself. This is a bit of an ego thing. Going to hit it tomorrow morning, + some cardio this night because of dancing, baby.
Feels good mi mang.
Until next time.