Povilas Petrauskas: How did I stop drinking alcoholic beverages?


I'm talking today Povilas Petrauskas, who was once a heavy drinker himself. Not a liter of vodka every day, but still destroying your brain. And he tried to quit alcohol twice in his life. Unsuccessfully. Let's hear how he fared in the third.

Hello, Paul. First, introduce yourself. In five sentences or less - who are you?

The most accurate answer to this question is that I am a student. A student of life. I study constantly, sometimes I take exams and observe what grades the teachers write: my children, my family, the people I communicate with. I share most of what I learn with them.

Do you often challenge yourself? Where would you place yourself on a ten-point scale from the cowardly Nuobodila to the superhero Batman?

I like to challenge myself, because it is very interesting to break old beliefs. I guess if I can call myself Batman without five minutes, I would rate myself as a 9 plus on the scale.

Tell us what challenge you took on and what were the rules?

Five years ago, the thought that it might be worth giving up alcohol started to creep in. Not because he pushed me into a corner, but because I kept seeing some negative post about him. People who don't use it were very inspired.

For me, alcohol was a part of communication - sitting with friends in a bar and sipping beer, returning home in the evening - drinking and drinking a bottle of some other country beer.

The first to contribute to this challenge was my first son. When he was born, it was a little stressful because I had no experience and had to change my activities to help my wife take care of him.

There was a moment when he was a little sick and then I simply exchanged an evening glass of beer or a glass of good whiskey with ice for waiting - will I need to go somewhere, for example to the doctor, to buy some goods or medicine, etc.

At one point, I calculated that I didn't have any alcoholic beverages for three weeks. They encouraged me to set a goal of not drinking alcohol for five months. But later summer came, and with it barbecues and other entertainment, so beer appeared in the fridge again.

When we were expecting our second child, I had a new goal of not drinking alcohol until the second child was born.

I was like my wife's ally - no beer was needed, it was fun without it. Already then I could compare - time with alum and time without it. Time without beer seemed to take over.

And then my 33rd birthday was just around the corner, so I decided to take on the challenge - a whole year without alcohol.

This was my final stage of the challenge.

And why did you choose this challenge?

The desire to see another truth, to test one's limits led to the challenge. Another reason is wasting time with alcohol.

During the periods when I was determined not to use, I found that I had more time for myself and for those who needed it from me; conversations with friends became more productive even during a short meeting time; the syndrome of doing nothing on the second day disappeared, because after the evening "with degrees", the next day there is a lack of both sleep and attentiveness.

I felt more time in my life when I wasn't using it.

Overall, how did you go about achieving your goal?

The very beginning was quite unusual. I drove everywhere by car so that I wouldn't be tempted to drink alcohol. It was often necessary to prove that "I'm not a camel" and I "didn't care" here, that giving up alcohol was not due to health problems.

At that time, I would also see balls that had turned up, when the people around them started talking intelligently in three or four languages and everyone became very suggestive, and in the morning they were already much quieter. Then I thought that I looked quite strange too.

And around the eighth month, I suddenly realized that I don't need alcohol at all.

And I knew that I wouldn't be celebrating the celebration of abstinence with a glass of beer this time.

Unexpectedly, not much stood in the way of achieving the goal, because I was probably morally prepared. And when it was difficult, I would think about the reasons that prompted me to take on the challenge.

How did you feel after completing the challenge? Did you achieve what you initially hoped for?

The day of reaching the goal was an ordinary day - there was no need to even celebrate. I knew I would make it. And now that I look at it, the word "challenge" doesn't work for me anymore.

So what did you learn during your challenge?

One clear lesson - I value mindfulness in a completely different way now. Concentration became much better, less distraction. I suspect I saved money too. Yes, I really saved.

Do you have any advice for people who want to repeat or surpass your adventure?

Poor advisor from me... There is nothing to improve here. It's just worth rethinking what you're getting and what you're giving up. I was getting everything with alcohol that I can get without alcohol, so why spend time, money and energy on it? Better to channel it all elsewhere.

And by the way, if the results of such a challenge are happy after a couple of weeks, then there is no victory here.

If you want to feel the result, when you feel well-rested every morning, when you look at everything more calmly and you don't need special rituals for that, then I would invite you to continue the challenge of not taking it for at least four months, and then, after another four, evaluate how well everything is going.

Soooooo… What challenge will you take on now? Already have ideas or secret desires?

Yes - to learn a new profession. I'll start when I get back from vacation.

Thanks for sharing, Paul!

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