7 Steps to Drinking in Moderation

by Rebecca A. Watson on January 22, 2015

in Recovery, vlogs

One night several years ago, I decided that I’d start to make tea after dinner in an effort to stop myself from drinking more than my alloted two glasses of wine. To my surprise, after a few minutes I didn’t really want to drink any more wine.

It worked! I thought. I’ve figured out this moderation thing! And it did work.

Until it didn’t. I began making tea later and later. Then I stopped making it altogether. This is just one of the many types of experiments I did during my moderation research.

drinking in moderation

Now I’m a tea fiend. I even make up recipes.

In order to share these findings, I’ve made a video for you. If you’re not keen on watching it all, I’ve provided the Cliff’s Notes below.

After drinking like a college student for most of my 20s, I decided to get it under control. So I moderated for a good three years or so. I also know a ton of penpals who have tried as well. This is a combo of what we learned.

1. Decide You’re Drinking in Moderation

This usually happens after some big drinking time (Thanksgiving+Christmas+New Years= OMG I must get control of this thing) or event (2 week vacation: late nights, sleeping in and hangover recovery can’t continue once you’ve returned home).

2. Make Some Rules

Only on weekends. Never alone. Only two drinks a night. Only beer. Only at the pub with friends.

3. Follow the Rules

Yay you! You’re moderating!

4. Break Your Rules

Thursday is practically the weekend. Sunday night is definitely still the weekend. Wine glasses get bigger. Cocktail pours get heavier.

5. Beat Yourself Up

Guilt=Inner critic crack. The mind chatter is all aimed at you and your failures.

6. Have a Fuck-It Moment

Exhausted by all the rules you’re making and trying not to break, beat down by the constant barrage of self-criticism, you let your hair down in an attempt to have some fun. After all, you’ve moderated for 1 week/month. You don’t have a problem. Heck, you deserve a reward.

7. See Step One

Later, rinse, repeat. Have you looked up the definition of insanity?

Or you could try the 100 Day Challenge. After years of alcohol and moderation research, why not give lucid research a few months? It’s the least you can do really.

Unless you’re into the whole circular logic and stuck lifestyle. Then by all means. It’s your choice.

Wondering if you should quit drinking? Check out my audio class here. In the 20 minute class, I’ll walk you through my simple test to tell you if you should take the 100 Day Challenge and tips on how to do it.

Photo Credit: Martin Phox

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

ScrubJay February 3, 2015 at 5:12 am

Hey Rebecca, this is perfect timing! On the day you posted this, I decided to try moderation! And it worked… exactly as you describe. Which means it didn’t work. I had to learn the hard way. So much better to be sober!


Rebecca A. Watson February 3, 2015 at 3:06 pm

Honestly, I feel like sometimes you have to learn the hard way. I know I sure did! But yeah I’m with you — sober is better 🙂


Cynthia February 24, 2015 at 1:56 am

Too funny! And sad, cause I’ve done it and watched so many try it. Kind of good to try tho because it shows us just how out of control we really are!


Rebecca A. Watson February 24, 2015 at 10:04 am

I think a lot of people try moderation and (hopefully) become exhausted by the effort. But then the question becomes: Do I quit or do I drink the way I want to? And that is something we all have to answer for ourselves.


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