Halfway through my alcohol free year and how my life’s changed.
Stephen Lloyd

Well done! 2017 has also pretty much been an alcohol free year for me, (for different reasons ;-), but I have always found the peer pressure to drink when socialising weird. Even before this year, I usually only drank once or twice a week, and seeing people say “you’re not drinking?” when I’m ordering a sparkling water made me cringe. This year I’ve also heard “oh, I forgot, you can’t go to the pub”…? Urgh. Yes I can. People can physically go to pubs and not consume alcohol, thank you very much.

I was just listening to Phil Zombardo being interviewed today where he was giving tips on defying unjustified social norms, and one of his recommendations was to do a weird thing for 24 hours every once in a while, to immunise yourself against social pressure. So like, drawing a square on your forehead and keeping that all day, and being vague as to why you’re doing this when people ask (“just something I’m trying for an experiment”). And then observing how much effort people put into getting you to erase it to conform to the norm. Helps puts things into perspective when you feel peer pressure in the future.

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