Self-Improvement: Why Micro-Changes Matter More Than Huge Transformations
I’ve taken a few weeks off drinking. It was almost an accident. I moved to the Swiss Alps for the Autumn and have been so focused on work and exploring the mountains that I just forgot to drink.
That’s actually a great way to implement changes in your life — just forget about a bad habit. It’s how I quit smoking — moved to a new place, hung out with people who don’t smoke, and just forgot that it was ever a thing I did.
It’s a lot like Douglas Adams’ advice for flying: “The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.” You have to fall, get distracted mid-way through, and forget to land.
No drinking is pretty good, actually
Since I have stopped drinking, lots of things have changed. My skin is better, I sleep better, and I can focus better. You know the list; you’ve heard it all before from all sorts of condescendingly virtuous sources. Since I stopped drinking, everything has been so much better! In fact, I myself am so much better than you!
I was gonna write an article reluctantly confessing that the things they say are true. Going sober makes you feel pretty darn good. But then I realised how annoying these sorts of articles are because they take such an all-or-nothing approach.
The Pitfalls of All-or-Nothing Thinking
I’ve wanted to reduce my drinking for a while. Covid got me into the habit of drinking most nights, and it has increasingly felt like it wasn’t bringing me much joy anymore.
One of the reasons it took me so long was that part of me assumed that if I stopped, it had to be entirely, and it had to be for good.
That is not how it works.
You don’t have to quit drinking. You can drink less.
You don't have to only eat healthy food. You can swap out some of your meals for more nutritious options.
You don’t have to go vegan. You can just eat less meat.
You can celebrate the small changes you make in your life, you don’t have to wait for massive…