Why I started the Stop Drinking Expert website to help people quit drinking
Stop Drinking Expert Has Helped Thousands To Quit Drinking
I wrote the book with little expectation that it would one day become what I do for a living on a day-to-day basis.
I simply wanted to share what had worked for me, in the hope that it may help other people in a similar situation with their use of alcohol.
I spent a decade of my life trying to moderate my drinking.
Some of the things I tried were dangerous (such as prescription only medication bought on the internet), some things were sensible (but fundamentally flawed) and some attempts to control my drinking were just downright silly.
The first time I went to see a GP and confess that I was worried about my drinking I was shocked by how hopelessly useless he was.
I had finally plucked up the courage to go and ask for help and instead of being given a solution I was offered a useless platitude.
The doctor listened to my problem and do you know what he said in response to my admission of just how much I was drinking? He said ‘yes, that is quite a lot. You should definitely try and reduce that’.
That was it!
Apart from a vague suggestion that if I need any help I should come back.
Did he not know how many times I had tried to make that appointment?
Did he have no understanding of how out of control I felt?
I went home and opened a bottle of wine and pushed the whole issue to the back of my mind. A full six months later I had a medical booked through the benefits package I had at work.
Once again I decided to ask for help.
I wish the Stop Drinking Expert existed back then!
After I had been weighed and had my blood pressure checked by the nurse. I was shown through to the Doctor’s office for a lifestyle chat.
I took the opportunity to explain that I was drinking far too much and turning to alcohol to help deal with the stress of life.
He listened carefully and nodded in agreements at various points.
Then when I had finished baring my soul to him, he laughed. He looked me in the eye and said “My good man, your drinking isn’t a million miles away from my own. Try not to worry about it, just cut down a little”.
I was terrified, because if the medical professional couldn’t help me then who on earth could?
For a long time, I felt entirely trapped, I didn’t want to go to Alcoholics Anonymous because I was a respected local businessman.
I was the director of two companies and the patron of a large children’s charity at this point.
Nobody knew about my drinking problem, because it in no way affected my work or personal obligations. I never missed a day of work through alcohol and my driving license was free of DUI’s.
I was trapped in an unbreakable loop, or so it seemed. I was drinking every day as a matter of routine.
This was during times when I would describe life as going well. When I hit a speed bump in the road, such as stress at work or family illness I would hit the hard stuff in a big way.
It is because I have dealt with so many issues of alcoholism personally that made me call myself the Stop Drinking Expert.
I couldn’t deal with life without alcohol to blur the edges of it.
When the drinking started to affect my health and I was seeing consultants because of the pain in my right side – I knew I had to do something different.
Everything I had tried had failed and failed dramatically.
Each attempt to moderate my drinking had resulted in my drinking even more than before.
Alcohol is so powerfully effective at what it does because of the extremely slow way that it invades the life of the drinker.
You can get hooked on heroin in a couple of weeks but alcohol takes years, sometimes even decades.
Because it moves so deliberately, we are like the frog that is dropped into a pan of cold water on the stove and slowly boiled to death.
I knew by this point that I could not moderate or stop my drinking by using willpower, gimmicks or medication.
I had tried every combination of that over the past few years. I fell back on my training in hypnotherapy and Neuro-Linguistic Programming.
I knew that I had to frame alcohol differently.
Instead of seeing it as a benefit in my life, I had to flip alcohol around so it became as abhorrent to me as heroin and other drugs.
Over next new few months, I because obsessed with alcohol, not in the same way I had previously. Now I was OCD about discovering the truth behind the smoke and mirrors of the glossy marketing.
One by one I took everything I believed about booze and learned the truth.
I slowly understood why we think it helps us relax, be more sociable, feel more confident and the hundreds of other lies that the drug has successfully woven into the daily fabric of life.
One day I bought a bottle of vodka and I sat alone staring at it. I poured a large glass and drank it. As I swallowed it I became aware that I was not enjoying it at all.
I knew instantly that it would be my last day as a drinker.
The next morning I woke up and poured the remaining vodka down the kitchen sink. I felt free but more than that, I felt peaceful.
Previously when I had stopped drinking there was always a sensation of panic at the back of my mind. I would worry whether I could ‘do this’ and would I live without alcohol even be worth living.
This time I felt calm and confident – I knew that I didn’t want alcohol in my life anymore. This was really the birth of the Stop Drinking Expert concept – although I didn’t know it yet.
A few weeks later I started to write the book ‘Alcohol Lied to Me’, I still felt my situation was unique but I hoped it might help a few people out of the trap.
It wasn’t until about a year later that I started getting a regular flow of emails from people saying the book had changed their life.
They were grateful but were asking lots of the same sorts of questions. I realized then that I could help a lot more people if I built something online.
A resource that was always there to help people who had been addicted to alcohol.