During the cortisol raising anxiety regarding COVID-19, many are taking to the bottle for solace and comfort. Alcohol sales are definitely up as stress and stay at home orders are globally enacted. Most people hate being told what to do. Now as most adults battle with staying well, taking care of the kids, the mortgages, keeping on to the job, paying rent, dealing with death and some on the front lines of battling the corona virus, the last thing they want to hear is not only can you not have the freedom to go outside whenever you want but you can’t use the bottle to drown your sorrows unless you want to increase your risk of getting sick. Logic goes out the window when people are under extreme amounts of stress. Suppressing emotions such as sadness, grief, fear, anxiety while uncertainty is the news of the day is almost impossible. Looking for a quick fix appears like only a drink or smoke away. Easing the pain of isolation becomes the norm. Alcohol is a readily available dangerous distraction of stressful life.
Stress is the underlying problem let’s look at that first and why heavy drinking is not the answer. Stress increases rates of insomnia, depression, rapid breathing which can cause shortness of breath, increase heart rates raises risk of a heart attack, long term stress lowers the immune system making it much more difficult to fight off diseases, the liver produces more sugar in the blood under stress which can lead to type 2 diabetes, poor eating can also increase risk of getting ill due to the body’s lack of nutrients and inability to sweep waste from the body. High levels of stress also causes infertility, low sex drive in some and erectile dysfunction. So the body is under stress already add to that COVID-19 exposure where your body needs to be on it’s A Game in mind, body and spirit and high levels of alcohol is added would be like Le Bron or Steve Curry trying to play in the NBA Championship inebriated. Their game would be a lot
more sloppy and lacking in Defense.
Alcohol in heavy usage, destroys the liver, increases heart attack risks, produces blood clots, makes it harder for the body to pump blood through the body, causes strokes, impairs brain function, can cause anemia, can cause vomiting, black outs, increases risky and dangerous behaviors, causes lack of coordination, reduces body core temperature, raises blood pressure and blurs vision. Alcohol can cause various cancers in the throat, breast, mouth, liver, larynx, colon, and esophagus. Heavy drinking long and short term can take a heavy toll on the body, impair judgment and put more people at risk for developing and not surviving COVID-19. What are the alternatives to heavy drinking? There are plenty. Use this time of uncertainty to change your life.
Here are some steps. And like a great basketball player, it will take some practice.
Write Down Your Feelings in a Journal
Spend Time Just Deep Breathing Slowly & Quietly
Learn A New Way of Exercise one that is Gentle on the Body
Learn a New Skill
Cook a New Recipe
Use this Time to Reconnect with Yourself & Love Ones
Make or Tend Your Garden
Do a Home Project
Write the Novel, Short Story, Screenplay, Song that you wanted to do but you said you didn’t have time for
Sew by Hand/Machine
Write New Goals
Clean your closets
Make Face Masks for People On The Front Line
Turn off the TV
Stop Smoking which also leads to respiratory diseases
Limit Social Media
Write and Say Positive Affirmations for Yourself
Use this Time to get to know yourself and your loved ones again.
Start imaging the world you want to live in and think about what we can do better in the future.
Discipline is easy to have when times are easy; difficult to have when times are not.