A few months later, I went and bought another book by the same author, titled "The Easy Way to Stop Drinking." However, I was terrified to actually read it. I knew how well the first book had worked, and I was not ready to take that step with my beloved alcohol. That book sat on my shelf for six years.
Over those years, I attempted to quit or reduce my drinking several times, all miserable failures. As I entered my mid thirties, I realized that I had become complacent. Not just with drinking, but with life. Upon this realization, I became less afraid to give the book a shot. I couldn't find it (I had stashed it in my glove box for a road trip I took in 2012), so I downloaded it in iBooks for my phone. It was titled differently. "The Easy Way to Control Alcohol."
It's been about three months since I closed that book, and as you may have guessed it, it produced the same result as the smoking book did. I put the word "matrix" in this title because it feels exactly like that (if you're familiar with the movie). I honestly had major doubt that I could be given a perspective that would prove to me that alcohol never had any major pros in my life. I had convinced myself that I enjoyed drinking, when in fact all along I was only enjoying the relieving of stress, boredom, and insecurities that were created by drinking in the first place. I had convinced myself that I became more 'social' when drinking, when in fact almost all of my social mistakes were made under the influence. I had convinced myself that drinking gave me confidence, when in fact it was slowly stripping me of my confidence. I had been robbing myself.
Were there times that I enjoyed myself? Of course. Imagine you used to have a job that you absolutely hated. But in the afternoon, when it came time to take out the trash, you loved it because the long walk to the dumpster had a scenic view of the sunset. You always loved that one part of your shitty job. Now, looking back, you can remember those walks and cherish them. But does that make you wish you had your old job? Not a chance in hell.
Imagine finding out that you've been getting robbed by a long time friend that you've shared many good memories with. No matter how good the friendship was, it's memory will always be tainted with the fact that it was all bullshit. That friend was never a real friend, and now that you know that, you would be a fool to wish a continuing relationship with that person.
This isn't your regular quitting of alcohol, nor is this a constant work in progress like most of society would have you believe. Notice I've never said that I 'quit' drinking, because even that word 'quit' presumes the giving up of something.
Do I have fears? I don't fear becoming a drinker again. But I do fear moving forward in life without an excuse for being lazy or non-productive, which is pretty weak I'll admit. But most of all, I am terrified at the idea that I may have never come to such a simple basic conclusion on my own. I could have been stuck in that trap for the rest of my life, just like many of those I see around me. I needed to read a book. That's a big blow to my ego for sure.
People generally ask me what the book says, and I honestly cannot do it justice. If smoking or drinking is something in your life that you are willing to change, I highly recommend these books by Allen Carr.
A great philosopher once said, "To see the cage is to leave it."