“Doesn’t being sober make you boring though?”
This is a phrase I’ve heard time and time again here at Soberfromhome.com and LiveRehab.com. Over the years we’ve helped thousands of students earn a sober life and keep working towards long term sobriety.
And I can’t think of a single one of them who was boring!
Why are so many people so hung up on this notion that a sober life is boring?
In fact, where did the idea even come from? While we may never know who started this rumor we can most likely assume that it comes from someone or people having a hard time with drinking alcohol themselves.
Contrary to popular belief, your social life doesn’t just disappear because you stop drinking alcohol. Deciding to be sober is a very personal decision and, don’t get me wrong, will change your life in ways you likely aren’t prepared for.
When you decide to focus on sobriety you are deciding on a new, healthy lifestyle and that can really impact existing social events and relationships you used to have. There were likely people in your life that contributed to bad decisions in your life.
You know who we’re talking about!
Those people who pressure you or drink around you even though you’ve told them you no longer drink. Or perhaps you haven’t told them yet. But you still know who they are!
Being around drunk people when you’re in the throws of your recovery is bad a combination. This might be where the notion of sober people being boring came from. If you had relationships with people that you’ve now broken to keep sober it is isn’t hard to see how those old “friends” might think of you as boring now.
However, healthy coping mechanisms in recovery don’t include going to bars or hanging out with a drunk person even if they are a good friend of yours.
Your mental health is more important than that!
Sober People aren’t Boring
Look, putting it bluntly, sobriety is only as boring as you make it. While your life might have previously been consumed with drinking days you’ve now got a free life and time to pursue other things. Many people we’ve talked to over the years tell us that they’ve now been able to focus on side hobbies they weren’t able to before.
When drinking takes over the majority of your time it can feel as though you lose days to things like hangovers. Sober people get to enjoy a healthy lifestyle that doesn’t revolve around drinking and recovery from hangovers.
Imagine waking up without a crazy, throbbing headache or feeling sick!
Sober people get to participate in and enjoy all of the activities and day to day life that everyone else does. In fact, there is nothing I can think of that sober people can’t do that others can!
What has to Change
However, you do need to recognize that living sober means changing certain things in your life. Some people will claim a certain amount of sober boredom but that’s because they haven’t reconfigured and changed. Addiction recovery programs teach you that new routines, social groups and building authentic relationships are at the core of long term sobriety.
Yet so many people don’t take the time to design a new life for themselves. You need to know that your old social situations will produce a strong desire to drink again. This goes against all the work and effort you’ve put in to date.
What you must begin to do is build new routines and hobbies that support or reinforce your recovery.
9 Ways to Fight Sober Boredom
- Make journaling a key part of your routine. It will help highlight why you may be making certain decisions in your life.
- Find a great sober friend to make plans with. You also get the added bonus of supporting each other if you need it!
- Integrate outdoor fitness to your life. Choose activities like hiking, cycling or even swimming if possible. Nature is a great way to support mental health goals too.
- Talk with your old social circle and ask them to continue inviting you to events but see if they are willing to make them not revolve around drinking. This one might be tough but in the long run worthwhile if they agree.
- Pick up a new hobby. Find something that has a great community around it too. It doesn’t have to be boring either.
- Get involved with a local community group or volunteer your time. There are some great payoffs including improving the world around you!
- Go back to school or learn a new skill. These will have practical benefits but also lifelong learning makes you focus on having a growth mindset – hugely powerful!
- Start a side hustle! Now that you have lots of extra time this could be the best opportunity you have to pursue a little extra cash on the side.
- Learn not to worry about what people think any more! This better state of mind you’ve been working on is for you anyway. You don’t need to be thinking about how your actions might make people view you.
One of the biggest things you can do is get involved with a recovery community. Traditionally people think of AA but that doesn’t always have to be the case. There are lots of sober groups in most cities and you can even join an online one too (yes we have one at over at Live Rehab too).
A good recovery community will help you see past your current ways of thinking and connect you with other like-minded people.
For a long time, the media has supported this idea or fantasy that being sober is boring. From movies to TV shows, we see characters being portrayed as boring if they don’t drink. Sobriety has been given a bad rap from the media and it’s time to realize that there’s a life beyond addiction to alcohol.
So many of our social situations in life revolve around the use of alcohol or other substances so it can seem like you’re different from those around you.
Like anything in life, as time passes you will begin to realize that you’re now leading a much better life than before.
A life of sobriety is only as boring as you choose to make it!