Will you start drinking again in January?

At the beginning of the year so many of us go on a health initiative. Whether it is joining a gym, doing the couch to 5k, or giving up alcohol. The aim is usually about mitigating the damage of overindulgence during the holiday period.

So, what happens in February and how was January?

I have been unable to attend my usual two classes a week down my gym, due to contracting the viruses that have wiped out so many of us. For the last couple of weeks I have tried to get back into my classes only to find a waiting list of 17 people!

Putting my gym clothes on the chair Monday evening I determined I would go to the actual gym and face the machines the following morning. The ladies on reception assured me that it would be a matter of weeks before the hive of activity was diminished as people returned to their normal way of life.

Friday is coming!

Speaking to various colleagues and clients, I know that some are eagerly awaiting permission to consume again.

How hard was it to abstain?

Let me ask you a few questions and see how you do.

  • Was it difficult to relax and wind-down?
  • Because you abstained, did you start to use something else instead?
  • Did you have to drink alcohol free drinks to trick yourself?
  • Was your pain, normally suppressed, rise the surface?
  • Were you short tempered?
  • Dissatisfied?
  • Miserable?

If you answered yes to any of the above it may be useful to consider how dependent, you had become. If you are concerned you could consider limiting your drinking to weekends only, as a starting point, or join a local support group.

In our urge to consume again, we often fail to reflect on what we have gained during our abstinence.
  • Could you get up earlier?
  • Was sleep deeper and more refreshing?
  • Did you have a clear head and thus make things happen?
  • Did you wake up without a headache once you had got used to it?
  • Were you easier to live with?
  • What difference did it make to your relationships, were they friendlier, happier?
A quick couple of questions to HR.

How did abstinence for some affect the work-place?

  • Were tempers stretched at the beginning of January and have now calmed down?
  • Did you have to deal with more fall-outs?
  • Were people more reclusive or more irritable?
  • Did you notice that productivity increased as January continued?
  • Were less people were having extended lunchtime meetings?
  • Are staff less bleary eyed in the morning now?
At the end of the day we need to be accountable for our own behaviours.

Recent surveys have revealed that staff are unsure how confidential HR really are.

In my experience, the clients that I work with from HR are passionate about their work. Confidential and  striving to provide the support their staff need. There is more support for mental health issues and staff relationships.

Chieu Cao CEO of Perkbox states. ‘It starts with creating an environment of psychological safety. It starts at the top. We need buy in from the seniors. Leaders need to gain support from each other.’

So, whoever you are, at the top of your game and isolated, or juggling life and family commitments. Whether you are unhappy at work or feel overwhelmed in a new role, take a deep breath and reach out for support.

Do not lose the benefits of January as you run into February.