It’s becoming increasingly hip to go sober. Today’s generation tends to teetotal far more than the last one, and more are drinking less, and that’s a trend that’s been on the rise since the 90s came and went.
With that, the world has become increasingly tolerant of sobriety, to the point of accommodating and welcoming it even in areas of life that have been traditionally boozy, like the beverage market and nightlife market. More and more brands are investing in non-alcoholic goods – and you know that when massive corporations are pushing it, it’s gotten very popular.
Yet profitability aside, the newly sober market has also helped revitalize countless industries that simply make it their goal to entertain and provide spaces for drug-free fun.
Sobriety isn’t the beginning of something boring – it’s the first step towards the most exciting time of your life.
Sober People Have Way More Fun
When your life is dominated by drugs and alcohol, a lot of what you do revolves around the two. When addicted, an addict’s time is spent either high or seeking to be high, and that doesn’t leave much room for anything else.
Going sober isn’t a life sentence dooming you to spend an eternity struggling with immeasurable boredom, it’s a key to escaping Plato’s cave. Plenty of people who spent their teens getting sloshed don’t realize how much you can get done in the average 16-18-hour window that a given waking day is comprised of.
Sobriety gives you the ability to peer over the edge of the beer glass and see all there is to see, do all there is to do, and experience feelings outside of the spectrum of withdrawal and dependence.
Sensing Life Clearly
Some simple examples include visiting an excellent restaurant featuring a cuisine you had never tried before. Your mouth will be bombarded with tastes you hadn’t ever come to expect, let alone experience. You’ll feel bewildered yet, hopefully, intrigued. For the first time in a while, for most, you’ll have the opportunity to fully understand what it means to taste something.
You can do the same for every other sense. Sobriety offers you clarity, and the ability to perceive things on a level that simply isn’t possible when you’re completely reliant on drugs.
There’s something to be said for the possibilities of elevation offered by hallucinogens and other substances, but when you spend most of your waking life stuck in a cycle of terror and numbness, there’s no room for clarity or contemplation. Sobriety offers you the chance to cleanse your palate and taste again – in every sense.
Other things you can do include feeling your body. The endorphins released during exercise not only make you feel accomplished, but when paired with an activity you actually enjoy, you begin to experience life-changing joy at the prospect of hiking up a new trail, breaking a personal endurance record, or lifting a weight that was unthinkable just a few months earlier.
Sobriety offers you the chance to reflect on paper or canvas and express yourself. Some people are born to do a certain kind of creative work, but we’re all creative in our own way. It just takes time to discover the right medium.
It doesn’t have to be print or paint – you can express yourself by dressing in new ways, by composing music, by singing, by rapping, by dancing, or by tagging.
There’s joy to be found in cooperative play, from family games to mini-golf – and there’s joy to be found in fierce competition, especially when you discover within yourself the maturity to own up to a loss and come back even stronger.
Sobriety lets you feel life properly, without the filter that persistent drug use places over every emotion and feeling. When you’re consistently drunk or high, every day starts to feel the same and things begin to blend together. The challenge in sobriety is avoiding that stagnation, but unlike addiction, your opportunities to change it up are far more varied and realistic.
You Get to Remember What You Did
There’s something to be said for the fact that being sober generally means being healthier than when you’re addicted. This, of course, isn’t always the case. Some make the mistake of turning to other maladaptive coping strategies after quitting booze, drugs, or smokes – and instead they pack on weight through a newly-discovered love of sweets and salts.
But if your recovery helped you adopt a healthier lifestyle, then you’ll begin to reap the many mental benefits that kind of healthy living offers, from a lack of brain fog to quicker, better memory. And that memory is something special. How much can you recall your wildest bender? How much do you actually want to recall?
The ability to think back and reminisce is not just a great way to hold fond memories closer to our heart, but it’s critical to personal growth. We can only learn from the mistakes we make when they’re irrevocably burnt into our minds.
While some things never let go, no matter how hammered you were, there’s a lot we might not remember doing or saying after being too far gone. And the things we do and say when under the influence can be exceptionally hurtful.
It’s hard to forgive yourself or feel accountable for your actions when so much bad behavior is centered around an addiction, so going sober is an important step in the journey to convincing yourself that you’re still capable of being a better person.
Life Is Best Lived Sober
There are plenty of arguments to make in favor of sobriety, especially when it comes to emotional, mental, and physical well-being. But one thing that’s always important is to remember that sobriety only offers the freedom to seek levity and happiness, and it’ll never guarantee it. Meanwhile, an addiction is sure to rob you of the ability to be happy.
One is definitively better than the other, but there’s still a lot that goes into making a sober life work for you. It won’t be fun at first, and it’ll take some getting used to. One good idea is to begin surrounding yourself with plenty of sober friends and getting into as many sober activities as you have time for.
People can have fun in the strangest of ways, and you might find yourself enjoying things you hadn’t even considered in the past.