Ah, the New Year. Out with the old, in with the new, and this year, I don’t know anyone that wanted to keep 2020 around.
Maybe you’re looking back on 2020 with, not necessarily loathing, but as an incredible jumping off point for improvement and making your life a better place. You’ve tried it other years, and finally, decide this is your year to…go to the gym more! And then you remember…wait…you’ve tried this whole gym thing for the past three years. And every year, it starts amazingly! January 1st, you’re there! January 2nd, got it! This goes on for a few weeks and then, the inevitable hits: you stopped going.
This year is going to be different, you decide with resolve. You’re going to hire a trainer: someone to hold you accountable, who checks in on you, and shares the successes and the not-so-great moments. Fast-forward to the future, and you are still going to the gym. You kept your resolution! Congrats!
The difference? Accountability. Apply that notion of accountability to maybe another aspect of your health that you’re thinking about for 2021 – drinking less alcohol. You might be thinking, “…but there is no personal trainer for this!”
Ah, but there is – and her name is Jenn Kautsch, the founder of Sober Sis.
“Good intentions fall to the wayside without a structure of support,” Jenn says. “When you’re thinking about goal setting, it’s about changing your relationship with drinking. Maybe you’ve had too much over the holidays or through 2020 and you want to reset or reboot for 2021 – and you need those partners on the journey of progress.”
Jenn runs “21 Day Reset Challenges” every month (and if you’re reading this before January 3rd, you have time to hop on one right now!) to become what she calls “sober-minded.” It’s not a place for folks struggling with alcoholism: it is a place for folks who find themselves mindlessly pouring that 5pm wine or, as Jenn has seen during the pandemic, drinking out of boredom. “I’d wake up in the morning with good intentions but ‘wine o’clock’ rolled around, and I’d fall right back to my habit of an evening drink (or three!). Creating Sober Sis and the 21 Day Challenge provided that support group that women need when they are working to break – or make a new – habit. People will decide they want to drink less, so we provide space to take a break. The first 7-10 days are the hardest. This is when most people give up when on their own. We share tools early on to help with cravings and support women through the hardest part of the obstacle course. Instead of perfection, we’re focusing on progress in the group.”
This supportive group allows for accountability, connectivity and learning – and works to keep any feelings of shame far away. “We look at a slip-up as feedback, not a setback,” said Jenn. “In the group when someone makes a mistake, we focus on remembering the lesson. It’s like recon – we celebrate it, say ‘thank you’ for the information and feedback that we can all learn from.” This is a far cry from what we might be experiencing when we do this on our own – think of the last resolution you tried and remembered mid-March? I don’t know about you, but I think it’s me, that I can’t do it, that I’ve failed.
This network of women that make up Sober Sis is available 24 hours a day and seven days a week – and the challenge and group are complete with coaching, connection and, something I love, alternatives to alcohol that aren’t just syrup in seltzer. “There are so many alternatives out there that are exciting,” Jenn said. These are often showcased on her Instagram page, ranging from craft non-alcoholic beer to non-alcoholic premade, just-refrigerate-and-open cocktails like a “Mindful Mule” a non-alcoholic Moscow Mule from Spirity Cocktails or bottles to keep in your fridge from Mingle Mocktails.
If 2020 has found you like many women, either using a bit more alcohol than usual to cope with boredom or loneliness, or maybe just ready to start fresh and sober-minded in 2021, check out Sober Sis and join one of her monthly 21-day challenges: TinyURL.com/SoberSisFW. And remember – this is all a marathon, not a sprint.