As a former party girl, I know how to get crazy. Any random night — Wednesday? Why not? — I could always be found at whatever bar had the best drink specials.
Then, one day, I decided to see what would happen if I stopped. This is what I discovered:
Your Social Life Will Go Down The Drain
Life after drinking is way less exciting on the surface. Every time your group of friends gets together, it's to drink until they don't know their names and meet random people they'll never see again; or it's to drink 10 beers at someone's apartment and run their cars into poles on the way out of the parking lot (I won't name names).
So, while your friends are out guzzling whiskey sours, you'll be sitting like a hermit in your apartment, watching Netflix and eating a whole bag of veggie chips. And you'll be mostly okay with that.
But, You'll Find Out Who Your Real Friends Are
When people realize you're not going out to a club with them anymore, some of your friends will still actually want to hang out with you.
You'll do really awesome non-drinking activities instead: go out to dinner, take your dog for a walk in the park, or go to the movies or a concert.
Your friendships will flourish because you'll think of way better stuff to do than stand around wearing uncomfortable shoes in a loud, dark room with random people.
You'll Experience The Height Of FOMO
Hearing your friends talk about all their nighttime adventures without you sucks. You didn't get to meet that hot guy or girl or talk to the weird Uber driver.
You didn't share milkshakes at a diner afterward and then stumble home together when the sun was coming up. At first, you will be jealous. Then, you'll get over it.
You'll Have More Money
Drinks are expensive. Going out multiple times in a week can really put a dent in your bank account.
When you stop spending all your money on alcohol, you'll have more money to buy stuff you'll actually use.
You'll Lose Weight
There's a reason you gained the Freshman 15. It's because you spent every weekend playing beer pong and blacking out at frat parties.
When you stop drinking all the time, you stop getting the urge to hit up the Taco Bell drive-thru at 3am or eat that leftover pizza sitting in the fridge. You won't wake up craving three Egg McMuffins.
And, people will notice. Your jeans will be loose. Since you saved so much money from not picking up the bar tab for eight of your closest acquaintances, you can go out and buy yourself some new, smaller-sized clothes.
You'll Be Able To Wake Up Early
After a long hard night of partying, you sleep the whole morning away and finally stagger out of bed with a raging headache and your breath tasting like dry, stale vodka (not sexy).
When you didn't stay up until 4am out on the town, you can actually wake up when the sun comes up and get stuff done in the morning.
You won't be throwing up or scarfing down greasy food with your sunglasses on and hoodie up, looking and feeling like death.
You'll Remember What You Did
You've had a few nights where you've done stupid stuff (karaoke, calling people from work, throwing up in trash cans) and had to be reminded of it in the morning.
Then, you wanted to crawl into a hole and never come out or interact with people ever again.
You'll never know if some things actually happened or if you dreamed them, and you don't really want to know the answer.
When you stop getting drunk every weekend, you are totally conscious of everything you do. Life is way better when you actually remember it.
Overall, I've missed out on some good drunk fun with my friends, but it's worth it in the long run. I've figured out who really wants to hang out with me and not just drink all night.
I've become a morning person and dropped 10 pounds with zero effort.
I'll still celebrate my birthday with a margarita or have a glass of wine with my mom when I visit. But, it just makes it that much more of a treat.
And I get the same buzz from one drink that used to take me around five drinks to get to. That's definitely a plus.