Drinking & Friends

It can be easy to get carried away when we are with our friends. But did you know the people in North Yorkshire said if they had a friend to drink less with, it would motivate them to change their habits for the better. If you choose to drink less with your family or friends, it means that you can support and encourage each other.

We’ve put together some tips on how to drink less with friends and stay strong against peer-pressure:

Hold each other accountable

If you say that you’re ‘just going out for one drink’ make sure that you all stick to the limit you’ve set.

Change up activities

Pick something that doesn’t typically involve alcohol like a movie night, an afternoon coffee and cake; a walk, a round of golf or any activity or sports. It might even work out as less expensive!

Group motivation

Set up a WhatsApp or other digital group to keep each other going. You could taste test alcohol-free wine and beer and post your reviews – good and bad! Or share your frustrations when you fancy an extra glass of wine but have stuck with a cup of tea instead.

Stand Your Ground

At first your friends might try and persuade you to keep drinking but if you explain that you’re not drinking as much, and stand your ground, your friends will learn to respect your choice.

Tell Them Why

Tell your friends why you’re not drinking – you could say that you’re cutting down for your health, your job or because you’re trying to save money.

Buy Alcohol Free Alternatives

Your friends won’t know that you’re drinking an alcohol-free beer, wine or mocktail unless you tell them, because it looks like an alcoholic drink – just without the added hangover.
If you feel that your friends are barriers to you cutting down your drinking, then there are many online communities that encourage and support people who are in the same position as you. This can motivate you to cut down drinking and help you to make new friends!
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Dry January and Beyond

Alcohol Change UK runs a private Facebook group for people who want to moderate or live an alcohol-free life in the long-term
If that isn’t for you, make an excuse! If it helps:
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Take your car and tell people you’re driving

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Tell people you’re on a diet, and counting calories

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Say you can’t get a good night’s sleep when you drink

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Explain you have an early start in the morning

Whatever works for you!