3 Powerful Transformations Sobriety Brings to the Highly Sensitive Woman
As a highly sensitive woman, I have always been in touch with my emotions and intuitive feelings. It was no surprise I received guidance to move in another direction in order to drastically improve the quality of my life when things started going south in my life. Going out with friends and family often went hand in hand with drinking large amounts of wine or whatever libation I chose. There was no limit to how much I could drink as long as I believed it helped me to relax, forget my troubles, “connect” with people, and have a great time without throwing up or acing to crazy, I would carry on. Although drinking alcohol never really interfered with my practical life, it essentially stunted my spiritual growth in a major way.
In 2013 I seriously questioned my relationship with alcohol. I was 27 years old, just married and unsure about a lot of things in my life. Although I had a job, a marriage, friends, family, and a master’s degree, some of it just did not fit or feel right. I knew I was ambitious and I had the desire to start my own online business, I just had to idea where to start. I often wondered what life of sobriety would be like and dreamt about the freedom I would feel by waking up hangover free everyday. I decided to give sobriety a try and lasted 21 days the first time, 28 days the second time, 42 days the third time, 27 days the fourth time. These sober experiments all took place over the course of about two years until I finally decided once and for all I was done drinking. On December 31, 2015 I decided to take my last drink and I haven’t looked back since. As a highly sensitive woman, I was afraid of my strong feelings for most of my life. After choosing to live a life of sobriety, I realized for the first time ever my emotions were not as scary as I thought they would be. In fact, my life has drastically transformed for the better in the last year than it ever has in the 13 years I experimented with drinking alcohol. Here are three very powerful transformations sobriety has brought me as a highly sensitive woman:
Regular morning anxiety is a thing of the past
I am not saying feelings of anxiety completely go away when someone decides to stop drinking. Anxiety is a human emotion and happens to everyone. I wake up anxious sometimes but it is rare and it is usually circumstantial and disappears when I solve my problems. When I was drinking I would wakeup in the morning with some pretty intense feelings of anxiety without really knowing the cause. Within a few weeks of quitting drinking, I noticed my morning anxiety levels were drastically reduced. I learned from a health coach I was working with at the time that alcohol consumption and high anxiety go hand in hand. So if one is already a heavy drinker and regularly experiences high levels of anxiety, it will naturally increase as one continues to drink more. This was eye opening for me since I never thought alcohol was actually creating this problem in my life. The good news is my anxiety levels continued to decrease overall the longer I was sober. It felt so freeing to wake up each morning with a clear head and a plan or intention for my day. I realized I was in control of how I was feeling and not the other way around since there was no substance in the way affecting my overall quality of life.
I appreciate and value the simple things in life
When I was drinking I used to believe that it was my only source of having a good time. I never noticed the simple pleasures or miracles of everyday living. I would take a beautiful view of the city for granted, not fully listen to someone I was sharing a connection with, or fully feel the sensations in my body. Instead for the most part, I was eagerly anticipating when I would be able to get my next glass of wine and let loose. Once I stopped drinking I intentionally focused on the small things that brought me the most pleasure. I would do things like get up early to go to the local farmer’s markets, enjoy a delicious cup of coffee, give a friend my full attention while she talks to me, or arrange a beautiful bouquet of fresh cut flowers in my home or work. I began to eagerly anticipate these simple pleasures, schedule these “sober fun” activities in my calendar and slowly the desire to drink wine started to get less and less with time. While I was drinking alcohol I would have never believed anyone if they told me I could actually enjoy the simple things without taking a drink. I originally believed people that didn’t drink and enjoyed the simplicity of life were boring until I became one of them. My entire experience has shifted completely and I am ever so grateful for the little miracles in my life everyday.
I gained true clarity
I’ve often heard the saying that life begins at the end of one’s comfort zone. If we want to make changes in our lives, we need to take action. As my fellow entrepreneur, Marie Forleo puts it, “clarity comes from engagement, not thought.” When I was drinking I was stuck in thought and I often imagined how my life could be or what I had the potential to create. The problem with this is all I had were ideas and no follow-through or action plan. Drinking alcohol captured me in the pattern of thought and robbed me of my ability to follow through on many of my amazing ideas that came to me intuitively. I always knew I wanted to start my own business and live a freedom lifestyle and these were just concepts in my head until I decided to stop drinking. Living a sober lifestyle has allowed me the space to create magical changes in my life since my time is no longer dedicated to my drinking habits. Sobriety has afforded me the opportunity to engage in my passions on a daily basis. Each day I set the intention to move in the direction of my dreams and I follow through for the most part. It is these intentions that fuel the action and the action and engagement often leads to the clarity on the next steps I need to take in my life. This is something that could have never happened if I chose to continue drinking alcohol.
These are truly amazing energetic transformations in my life from almost a year of sobriety. As a highly sensitive woman, these transformations have truly changed my life for the better. For me I always knew it was an “all or nothing” approach for me when it came to alcohol. Just like we sensitives are sensitive to the world around us in many ways, we are also often very sensitive to the negative effects of alcohol. Sometimes the best decision for us is to stop drinking all together to see the magical ways our lives can transform for the better.
Are you highly sensitive? Have you recently quit drinking or are considering it? Please share your thoughts or stories in the comments below!