Sober October: Tips to reduce alcohol consumption

By Ailsa Frank on October 6th, 2023

Feeling sober curious? Sober October is the perfect time to give it a try! Ailsa Frank shares some tips and advice to avoid the pitfalls and help you to ‘get away with’ drinking less in social settings and at home, whilst enjoying the benefits of being more sober.

There are so many benefits of drinking less such as feeling refreshed, in control, spending less, avoiding embarrassment and being more focused. More people are often feeling the pressure to drink socially with friends or work colleagues and often dread events. Drinking socials can get out of control. It is best not to tell people you aren’t drinking but instead tell them you are drinking less and feeling so good. This way they will accept the news better but also want to drink less themselves as you are sounding so excited about the benefits.

Employers can offer alcohol free alternative work do’s such as group bonding yoga classes, a self-defence course, a spa day, a sailing or paddle boarding day, an eat as much as you like breakfast in a beautiful hotel or get the team involved in a charity run! You can suggest to meet a friend for a morning walk and a coffee or meet at an art gallery or place of interest so the focus of the time together is not alcohol focused.

12 ways to take back control of alcohol

Shake up your routines

Change your habits around the time you would normally start drinking, for instance go for a walk after work, have a shower or bath and change into comfy clothes, drive a different route, drink sparkling water in a wine glass instead of wine, take time to drink a herbal tea, or hit a bucket of golf balls at the range. Enjoying life as you go is key to feeling more in control. Lots of small changes will help you break the drinking cycle as many of your old routines are triggers that make you automatically reach for a drink, many small changes will help.

Learn your limits

Limit yourself to 1-2 drinks by alternating with a glass of water in between.


Be the driver so you don’t drink at all.

Lose your drink

Lose a drink on a table when you are out socially, make an excuse to go to the toilet and come back empty handed.

Start with water

Always start with a water out socially. Say “I am thirsty.”


Visualise your life as a non drinker or someone who is the sober one. See yourself back home at the bathroom mirror brushing your teeth sober.

Disguise your drink

Drink sparkling water with a slice of lime as this looks like an alcoholic drink, or an elderflower cordial in a wine glass.

Change your conversation

Make a point of saying to yourself ‘I go to bed sober every night’, ‘I prefer not to drink’ ‘I am happy with a soft drink’ instead of speaking negatively ‘Shall I have a drink’, ‘Will I drink’, ‘I need a drink’. Your subconscious mind is listening to you so make sure your conversations are positive.

Leave on time

Visualise yourself as a successful person dropping in on a social event but leaving on time.

Have a plan

If you’re at home plan activities and hobbies for each evening to keep you busy such as Monday: face pack home spa evening, Tuesday: cook a new recipe night, Wednesday: movie evening with a pot of herbal tea, Thursday: join a class to learn something new. By having a plan you are more likely to stick to it and avoid alcohol.

Leave early

Make an excuse to get home from a social event. You may have spent many years creating your drinking habits so now need to invest time into new plans to reprogram yourself and those who know you.

Shrink the alcohol down

Visualise a red triangle in your mind and imagine putting all the drinks you have ever had in your life into the triangle. Then shrink the triangle down in your mind until it is so small it is the size of a speck of dust. Repeat this exercise until you feel better. By taking control of your thoughts you will break the habit of craving alcohol and over time you will program your mind to feel in control of your thoughts.

If you are interested in hypnotherapy phone appointments visit contact us or click here for prices. Alternatively, visit the shop to buy alcohol hypnosis downloads or get the award-winning ‘Feel Amazing‘ app now to start listening straight away. Join the thousands of people who have taken back control of alcohol the Ailsa Frank way.

Ailsa Frank

British self-help author and hypnotherapist as seen on the BBC One programme, 'Hayley goes Sober', and is regularly featured in the press including The Telegraph, Daily Mail and Marie Claire magazine. She has helped thousands of people, from all walks of life, including busy parents, CEO's, actors, and singers, to overcome their home and work-life challenges. She is also well-known for her Take control of alcohol hypnotherapy reduction system. Ailsa is a keynote speaker and globally sells her successful range of hypnotherapy downloads on an array of topics, available in this 'feel amazing' mind wellness app.

All articles by Ailsa Frank

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