Have you ever participated in Dry July? If you haven't heard of it, it’s a public health campaign during which people all around the United States, Australia, and Europe abstain from alcohol for the month of July to raise money for cancer. The Dry July Foundation is a non-profit dedicated to raising money for those who have been affected by cancer.
Here at Reframe, we believe in taking small steps each day to change our relationship with alcohol. Dry July may seem like a big step, but what better reason to take a break than for a great cause? (Not to mention the many benefits of taking a break from booze!)
Let’s Talk Benefits
So, what can you expect from an alcohol-free month? Here are some possible positive outcomes.
- Healthier appearance. Even over the course of a month, your body can experience changes when you cut back on or abstain from alcohol. Alcohol is a diuretic and exacerbates dehydration, making many features dull and dry. Say “hello” to radiant skin and brighter eyes! Not to mention, less alcohol can lead to weight loss.
- Improved energy and sleep. There's a common belief that alcohol can improve sleep. The truth, however, is that alcohol actually hinders sleep quality and quantity. When you participate in Dry July, you'll find yourself waking up feeling truly rested and having enough energy throughout your day. This is because you’ll experience more REM sleep, which is essential for restoration and emotion regulation. Additionally, you won't have to worry about hangovers!
- Saving money. When we're spending on alcohol, it adds up so, so fast. When you set goals to cut back or abstain from alcohol, you're automatically going to spend less money. This means more to save, invest, or spend on what truly matters.
- Better and brighter moods. Alcohol interacts with our brain's chemicals in a way that can lead to increased cortisol, or the stress hormone. This extra cortisol in our system can result in anxiety, irritability, and even depression. Throughout Dry July, you’ll likely experience decreased stress and better moods. This, in turn, can boost your productivity, social life, and overall outlook.
- Assessing how your body feels when cutting back. Here at Reframe, we think one of the greatest aspects of Dry July is the opportunity to notice how your body feels with less or no alcohol in it. It may be a bit of a transition period for you, depending on how new you are to this lifestyle of a changed relationship with alcohol. You may experience setbacks, you may experience amazing benefits, but no matter what, you'll have a better understanding of your own body and how alcohol interacts with it. And that, we believe, is priceless!
Quick Tips on Participating in Dry July
So, are you ready to get started with Dry July? Here’s how to set yourself up for success:
- Set realistic goals for yourself about your drinking habits. Take it one day at a time. Remember that change is an ongoing process that requires time, persistence, and dedicated effort. Keep showing up for yourself and stick to sustainable goals.
- Ask for support from friends, family, and other Reframers! Head to our in-app forum to connect with a global Reframe community. You can also check out to sober curious groups in your community.
- Practice saying "no" to alcohol ahead of time. Remember, “No” is a complete sentence! You don’t owe anyone an explanation for not drinking. To make the interactions easier, practice different ways of saying no, such as, “I don’t feel like drinking tonight” or, “No, thanks. I’m gonna stick to mocktails.”
- Think of some coping mechanisms you can turn to. Healthy coping strategies can look like a favorite hobby. These will come in handy when triggers or cravings pop up.
- Keep track of your drinks. Reframe’s personalized drink tracker can help with this! Set a daily target or commit to staying dry. You can even enable SMS reminders to log your drinks, and over time, you can look at trends in your habits.
Interested in Getting Involved?
If you want to learn more about how you can raise money and get involved in the Dry July Foundation Campaign, head over to their website by clicking here and create your own team to start raising today!
You can also join the Reframe app’s Dry July challenge — sign up towards the end of June 2024 to get started!