MAY 22, 2019 - Alcohol-Free Living
F.O.M.A - Fear of Missing Alcohol
by Teri Patterson, The Sober Nutritionist
Yes, you read that right; it stands for Fear of Missing Alcohol. I can’t take credit for the acronym but I can share that FOMA is a real thing. In my own Alcohol-Free journey, I struggled with feelings of missing out-
Would my friends find me boring?
Would I find them boring?
How would I navigate my day to day life without alcohol?
How would I feel when my husband fixed himself a cocktail, or pulled out an ice-cold beer?
And it’s not just me; recent studies show that women are closing the gender gap when it comes to drinking. Another study found rates of binge drinking increased by 17.5 percent among women between 2005 and 2012, but rose just 4.9 percent among men for that same period. And it’s easy to understand why: social media tells us that ‘day drinking’ is perfectly acceptable, ‘wine is healthy’ and ‘you deserve it’! You can buy wine art, wine t-shirts and even Disney (at their California Adventure Park) serves wine! So, it can seem that if you choose to cut back or take a break that you will indeed be missing out.
But let’s examine what you will really be ‘missing out’ on: empty calories, hangovers, poor quality sleep, health consequences, and, let’s face it – LIFE. Drinking might take the edge off at first, but the cost of numbing out is higher than you may realize. Loss of productivity is just one area where drinking takes a toll. In my own life, I found that freeing up my evenings created an enormous amount of time and energy. In fact, since my last drink (Oct. 18, 2015) I have: gone back to school, started a business, and began multiple healthy habits, including journaling and meditation. You can read more about my journey here in my blog ‘Sobriety is my Superpower’.
If you identify with this longing, this FOMA even a teeny bit, I invite you lean in and explore your relationship with alcohol. You don’t have to do a 12 step program, you don’t have to identify as an ‘alcoholic’ and you may not have to give up drinking forever. It’s a brave new world and there are numerous ways to check in and explore ‘mindful drinking’. Websites like ‘Hip Sobriety’, ‘She Recovers’ and ‘One Year, No Beer’ offer a virtual way to connect with a coach, support group or just take a peek from the sidelines and see if any of this resonates with you. My favorite one of these sites is “This Naked Mind”. I fell in love with Annie Grace, the founder, when I discovered her honest and life-changing course ‘The Alcohol Experiment’. I am privileged and excited to share that I will become one of the first certified coaches with TNMI (This Naked Mind Institute) and will expand my current practice to include Alcohol-Free support! TNM offers a new way to ‘flip the switch’ from missing out to finding freedom and joy by using cognitive dissonance, liminal thinking and real science and research.
What are you really missing out on? I would love to help you lean in and explore how to ‘discover your best self’! Find out more at www.thesobernutritionist.com