From naggins to nothing

Sober October is upon us, and the question on everybody’s mind is how a devout drinker can partake in the festivities.

How does one go from braving beer pong and savouring shots? The answer is simple: sheer will power.

For those of you who are unaware, Sober October is a fundraising campaign run by Macmillian Cancer Support. Participants ‘Go Sober‘ for the month of October to raise money for charity.

A great way to stay sober is to engage in social interactions with like-minded individuals. Sober Soc regularly organise alternatives to the typical night-club based social events of student life. This society champions sobriety without the pressure to abstain from alcohol for life.

Sober Soc recently organised DCU’s very first ‘Sober Week’ which was filled to the brim with events such as ‘Would I Lie to You?’ which was organised in collaboration with Psych Soc. It featured two teams; one for each society, who took turns regaling either truthful or dishonest tales. The opposition then judged whether the spiel was accurate or not.

One of the best ways to adopt sobriety as a habit, rather than a fad, is to socialise normally, but substitute spirits for soft drinks. This sounds idyllic in theory, but often proves impossible as peers pour all sorts of alcoholic potions into their pint glasses whilst you sip on what may be dubbed ‘the sensible option’.

Among the main issues with opting to be sober is the shocked expression and endless stares from peers who struggle to comprehend the concept (particularly in the cases of nights out and social gatherings where the consumption of alcoholic beverages is the ‘norm’).

Sobriety is an eye-opener at best. It provides you with a different perspective on the social scenes you succumb to. One becomes very aware of the questionable dance moves of your peers and their wonderfully pitched performances of tunes blared from amps. Not everyone is ‘all about that bass’ when it almost bursts every set of eardrums in the vicinity.

Another benefit of going sober for October is that, although regrettable decisions may still be made, there is a sense of relief when leaving a party or nightclub with the knowledge that memories of the night will still be intact come morning.

Abstaining from alcohol allows for a lot more activities. Imagine all the possibilities when splurging on shots is a thing of the past.  A lot of money is saved by ditching spirits for soft drinks and drunkenly ordered donner kebabs for a healthy diet.

Sober October has undoubtedly changed my own perspective on sobriety in general. It has allowed me to be more sociable without the need to consume excessive amounts of alcohol.

Sobriety doesn’t stand for staying in, staying away from those who drink or saying no to social interactions. It’s a conscious choice for health and wealth.

Aine Mark Monk

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