It may seem harmless; it’s legal and practically everyone drinks, but alcohol accounts for 88,000 deaths annually due to excessive use. While statistics prove that alcohol is a dangerous substance that is often overused, the act of cutting back or quitting drinking completely can be extremely difficult. How do you make a new friend? You meet them out for a drink. What does everyone want to do after work? Meet for happy hour. What do you do to survive those awkward family dinners? You drink.
It takes a little planning, but cutting back on drinking can be done without completely devastating your social life. Here are some tips.
1. Keep count
Evaluating and regulating your drinking can be done easily without getting unwanted attention. On a typical night out with friends, keep track of how much you drink, then compare the results with the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism’s recommendations. This takes into account standard drink sizes, so if you get a double vodka and soda, count accordingly.