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Research suggests that mindful drinking – a conscious approach to alcohol – will help you cut back on booze without cutting it out completely. Here’s how.
1. Examine your relationship with alcohol and picture the benefits of cutting down, from waking up feeling alert, rested and healthy, to shedding that morning-after anxiety.
2. Use a tracking system like the free Drinkaware app to tot up your consumption over a week or two, then aim to have at least a couple of alcohol-free days a week.
3. Pay attention to your emotions before knocking back a glass of wine. Listen to a podcast if you’re bored; call a friend if you’re lonely; go for a run if you’re stressed.
4. Avoid drinking out of habit. Just because someone else is having one, or because 7pm is G&T time, doesn’t mean you need a drink.
5. When you do indulge, enjoy it. Sip and savour your drink; focus on how it looks, tastes, and what memories or sensations it evokes. Make it special.