At the beginning of this year (largely from the hype of seeing so many other people mention it) I decided to take a month off from all drinking and all shopping. I didn’t even think that much about it – aside from the fact that November and December always feels extra indulgent and expensive. But now looking back, I can honestly say that it affected me much more than I anticipated. Below – the truth about my “Dry January”.
No Alcohol: This was the big one. To be clear, I don’t have a drinking problem and we’re all adults here so I’m definitely not passing judgement on anyone’s habits but my own. But in an average week, I probably have a drink at least half of the days. Sometimes more. Sometimes just a mindless beer while I watch TV after a long day at work. And if it brings me happiness I’m fine with it. But sometimes it didn’t. Sometimes it was that one extra nightcap that left me feeling tired and sluggish in the morning. Or knowing that I had all those extra calories that I hadn’t even really savored in any real way.
How I Did: I didn’t make it all 31 days without a single drink. I had about 4 total throughout the month – once on our staycation uptown, another out to dinner to celebrate our friends’ recent engagement and the other two times when Adam went out to dinner. I don’t regret a single one of those drinks. I was in the moment, really enjoying myself and the single drink I had each time. But every other weekend night and every single weeknight I didn’t have a drop.
Results: I honestly feel like my entire mindset to drinking has kind of shifted. Which is pretty drastic since I’ve been drinking consistently since I was 18 and aside from giving up vodka around 25 (a story for another day) I’ve never really given it much thought. I really enjoy drinking. Brewery tours when we travel, trying out craft cocktails at cute bars around the city, popping a bottle of champagne to celebrate with Adam – all in. But now I feel like I can recognize it as something I’m choosing to do with intention rather than doing out of mindless habit. And that feels nice.
No Shopping: This felt laughably easy compared to the no drinking thing. To be fair, I probably don’t go shopping as much as it looks like I do and I definitely shop less than the average fashion blogger. But still – for the past few years there’s been this Instagram-induced syndrome that feels like I need to always have something new to keep up in some way. And I hate that bloggers likely cause other average women to feel that same deficiency. I want to buy something because I truly love it and it sparks joy and I’ll wear it, not because I need the latest and greatest to feel like I’m enough. But there is plenty in my closet already and instead I want this to be the year I’m focusing much more on my financial health than the new arrivals section of my favorite websites.
How I Did: I successfully made it! At least I’m counting that I did. In reality I bought exactly two things all month: a new nude bra (desperately needed) and a replacement set of sheets after our other spare set ripped at the laundromat. Neither was a fun impulse purchase and while I could have probably squeaked by until February – I really kind of had to pull the trigger on both of those asap.
Results: I shopped my closet much more and never once felt like “I had nothing to wear”. Funny how that works. Also, I was able to set aside a few extra dollars to go towards my bedroom makeover project that I’m working on. Something that will bring my more longer lasting joy than a random new sweater would have. Again I think it comes back to intention. Buying things with more thought and purpose and less carelessness towards my savings goals and a society-backed need for consumerism. A mindset I feel excited about carrying with me all year long.
Phew – that was a lot but I wanted to share since some of you have asked how I did! How are you all doing on your own resolutions?