Once you’ve learned how to stop binge drinking on weekends and have been sober for a little while, you might not be sure what to do with your extra free time. You’re no longer spending a day drinking and a day recovering from a hangover. Being bored can lead to restlessness, which can lead to old habits … and for your health and sobriety, that’s not a good scenario. Over time, your cravings will diminish and you will find other ways to fill your weekends. One note of caution: take care to set yourself up for success, especially in the beginning. Going to a bowling alley may sound fun, until you’re surrounded by beer. Try to stay away from places that have a strong smell of beer if you’re worried about your willpower, and surround yourself with friends who take your sobriety seriously and won’t nag you to have “just one” drink. Now, on to the fun!
- Be a tourist. If you’re bored with your own city, drive to the nearest big city and be a tourist for a day. Do ALL the touristy things, even things that are out of your comfort zone. (Just don’t go wine tasting.)
- Game night with friends or family. It doesn’t even have to be a traditional board game. Set up pool or ping pong competitions or play video games. Have a long-distance game night by competing against each other on Xbox games.
- Plant a garden. Tending a garden, whether it’s full of vegetables or flowers, can become an all-day pursuit that will leave you tired, dirty, hungry and oh-so-satisfied at the end of the day.
- Join a recreational sports team. Like soccer? Golf? Mini-golf? Basketball? Baseball? Horseback riding? Tennis? Archery? Swimming? Karate? Running marathons? Whatever your preferred method of working out and having fun, find a group of like-minded people to do it with and you’ll be motivated to go out and do it every weekend.
- Try a hobby from your adolescence. Did you give up on guitar lessons in your teens? Try again!
- Go geocaching. This activity, which involves hunting for a hidden object by means of GPS coordinates posted on a website, is the old-school version of “Pokémon Go,” and it gets you hiking and exploring.
- Learn a new skill. Learn how to speak Dutch or how to upholster furniture. You’ve got free time and YouTube, allowing you to learn virtually anything.
- Go to the library on a regular basis and read books you just can’t put down. You’ll be surprised how well they can hold your attention, even if you weren’t big on reading as a kid.
- Spend a day helping others and your community! Volunteering your time to help others gives you a purpose and makes it easier than ever to meet new friends.
- Renovate your home. Need an all-consuming project? Renovate every room in your house. You’ll be busy for months, maybe years.
Once you know how to stop binge drinking on weekends by filling your time with non-drinking and meaningful activities, you’ll realize how rich life can really be!