I had my first taste of alcohol many years ago, and I was not fond of it very much. In fact, I despise the taste of it. When people, including my family and friends, observe this, their immediate response would be to ask why. To them, it is pretty out of the ordinary for a young man who lives in Kuala Lumpur, where alcohol consumption by men is typical and, to some extent, a must.
My family members tried as hard as possible to convert me into a moderate alcoholic, but they failed. They attempted to belittle my ego, embarrass me in front of their friends, and even communicate to me that I will never mingle with people if I do not learn to drink. Frankly, I am okay with socialising with myself. Why should I pressure myself to fit into society by drinking alcohol? Do they not know that the right people will come to you if you live you?
So, here are my reasons and principles surrounding the complete ban of alcohol from my life. It never ceases to amaze me that people find enjoyment in getting drunk and temporarily wiping out their memories, thinking that it will solve whatever issues they are dealing with. I am well aware that I have no right to tell everyone not to drink alcohol, but I hope my views are insightful enough for the readers here.
1. I Want To Enjoy And Embrace A Sober Life
This is the mother of all reasons. I want to cherish a life that I can embrace clearheadedly. The society I live in has made many things cool, provided there is plenty of alcohol involved. For instance, attending a plain boring party from every angle, from repetitive music to boring people. Then, someone brought a bottle of wine and a carton of beer cans, uplifting the entire atmosphere. Out of nowhere, the party turned merry. It sucks, in fact, but you numb yourself by letting the alcohol course through your veins and, at times, introducing drugs into the mix. With the right blend, you can have a high time everywhere.
However, I want to enjoy a life without feeling hallucinated or nauseated. I want to share my time with the right people that provide me with a memory worth keeping. I did not come to this planet to waste my time with drunkards at disgusting places that I can only tolerate with alcohol.
2. I Want To Live For As Long As Possible And Not Die From Alcohol Poisoning
Allow me to speak authentically: I want to extend my life, not shorten it. No one can deny that alcohol is a form of a drug that detaches you from reality. Think of alcohol as a hallucinogen. You can remind yourself daily that your taste buds love the taste of alcohol, and hence, you would crack open a can of beer every day to satisfy your addiction. Whether that is the truth, only you can answer this yourself.
Everyone has a motive for drinking alcohol: they see it as an escape from the problematic aspects of life, or perhaps, they see it as a social lubricant to loosen up and relieve themselves from a stressful day. Regardless of the reason, the fact remains the same: by drinking alcohol, I would degrade my health jeopardise its integrity. I do not want to put myself nor any of my organs on this destructive path.
3. I Want To Live A Life Where I Do Not Need To Find A Pressure Relief Valve
It is not uncommon for people to comfort themselves with a bottle of cold beer after a long day of stressful work. I mean, it seems to be the perfect go-to answer. That being said, though, I sincerely do not want to run a life that is demoralising and needs alcohol from time to time to remedy it. I want to experience both the highs and lows of life because they make life meaningful and exciting.
If I am stressed at any point, rather than introducing alcohol into my life, I would go for a run, work less, chill more, exercise more, read a good book, have an intimate conversation with my girlfriend and consume more good food with like-minded people.
The truth is, life is easy, but as human beings, we continually overthink it and make it unnecessarily complicated.
4. Quality Alcohol Hurts Your Wallet Deeply
No, I am not pointing at conventional beer or vodka here. I am directing this to the bottles of whiskey and wines. A bottle of fine wine would cost an average of $40. However, I know a couple of friends out there who drinks expensive wines that exceed the price of $400.
What’s worse, they consume them as if they are drinking water. Goodness grief, I would rather invest that amount of money and turn myself into a clear-minded millionaire, not a lost alcoholic, by the end of the decade.
5. I Do Not Want To Be A Bad Role Model In Front Of My Kids In The Future
Parents are the first thing children look up to when they seek guidance and inspiration in their moments of despair, even if your children will never disclose them. It is natural for children to mimic the behaviour of their parents swiftly. How many children who grow up in smoking households also smoke? Quite a lot, I would bet. I would not be surprised if my child will be drunk for the first time or take a puff for the first time.
I understand that children and young adults have to create their own borderline experiences, like all of us when we were sound (I am beginning to sound like a tiger parent, but ironically, I am not even married). However, I do not want to have to guilt myself for that.
6. I Want To Have A Clear Mind, All The Time
No amount of words can describe the feeling of being able to control every aspect of your life. That is not always guaranteed when alcohol is in the discussion.
When alcohol’s influence is messing your mind, you lose a certain degree of rational thoughts and creativity. I could be wrong here because there are some people who function better under the influence of alcohol, but one thing is for sure: alcohol harms me more than it benefits me.
I am pretty confident that when I am drunk, I will most likely lose all my train of thoughts and start spewing gibberish talks. I believe that is what most people do. However, you are unaware of it until you are the only clear-headed person in a drunken society. I see myself as a lightweight, and I do not want to get drunk to prove if my confidence is right and my intuition about my drunken behaviour is accurate.
7. I Do Not Want To Experience A Hangover Episode
Based on stories shared with me by my friends who have had hangovers in the past, it seems to be an unpleasant experience. In that process, they shared with me that it took them days to fully recover after a day of hard partying.
Wow, there are people who will willingly party like there is no tomorrow for a day only to feel miserable for the next three days? Not exactly a worthy return, but people rarely make this calculation before entering a party filled with alcohol.
Sure, you can consume alcohol at a party and leave without feeling pummelled. However, you can also attend a party without alcohol and hangovers.
Final 2¢: Will I Ever Drink Alcohol?
I would say that I am an athletic person, given that I run at least three times weekly and go to the gym at the same frequency to perform at least four strength-based exercises. Additionally, my kind of TGIF involves staying at home, reading a good book and writing whatever comes to mind, instead of going to the bars and pubs with my friends who are dying to have a shot of vodka down their throats. Those are my remedies that keeps me fresh and alert at all times of my life.
Somehow, alcohol act as a social glue. I cannot deny that you are deprived of numerous enchanted moments if you do not drink. Undoubtedly, I have missed many of them, but I have come to terms with this reality. I would rather spend my time jungle trekking or relaxing on the bed with soothing music playing in the background over a glass of fine wine. Although there are many medical journals out there highlighting that a small amount of alcohol is good for you and your physiology, the taste of alcohol is something I will never be able to get by.
My family members argued that being a good smoker and drinker would help you make new business clients and solidify your connections with existing business partners. However, I entirely disagree with that mentality because I will never accept a form of business or casual socialising where my health and quality of life are the victims. However, where I am from, that is the minimum the society is asking for. Nevertheless, I will never bow to any parties’ expectations because it is my life, my choice.