Are you sober curious?

If you’ve found yourself wondering how giving up alcohol could affect your health and wellbeing, even though you don’t feel like you’ve got a drinking problem, you could be ‘sober curious’. And you’re not alone. 

More and more of us are starting to reflect on the part alcohol plays in our lives and ‘sober curious’ is the term given to those who’ve ditched drinking for personal and wellbeing interests. It’s not the same as those who are sober because of a dependency or addiction to alcohol. To this group of people, alcohol can be destructive and even life threatening. 

Social norms 

Drinking alcohol, a highly addictive substance, is not only socially acceptable, it’s often socially expected. Historically, those who aren’t drinking are deemed the unusual ones but increasingly, that’s changing. Data from the annual health survey for England (2015) states 29% of 16-24 year olds don’t drink alcohol. This is across many socio/ethnic groups, suggesting that the behaviour is widespread and more and more acceptable. 

Curious about change 

The movement suggests that people become curious about their relationship with alcohol, its impact on their life and societal pressures. The movement, spearheaded by Ruby Warrington, author of “Sober Curious: The Blissful Sleep, Greater Focus, Limitless Presence, and Deep Connection Awaiting Us All on the Other Side of Alcohol, ” creates a community for all those who question this. Even if they don’t drink daily, haven’t experienced craving and don’t drink more than others around them, they might wonder what sobriety could bring them.  

We may rely on alcohol to destress or to get in the mood to socialise. How would we cope without that crutch? Some people find taking a break from drinking clarifies their relationship with alcohol and develops their coping skills in other ways. Abstinence doesn’t have to be permanent, being sober curious enables you to see how it fits into your life. You may find that you enjoy a clarity of mind and renewed energy but decide to still enjoy a glass or two on high days and holidays – this is the fundamental difference between sober curious and sobriety.  


Trying it can help us reassess what part we want alcohol to play in our lives. As well as no hangovers, reducing or eliminating alcohol can lead to: 

  • Better sleep, mood, skin condition and concentration. 
  • Lower blood pressure and blood sugar levels. 
  • Weight loss. 
  • Money saving. 
  • Improved long term health and wellbeing. 

Being sober curious can lead to lasting lifestyle change and a more mindful approach to future alcohol intake. There’s nothing to lose and lots to gain. 

If you’re concerned that your drinking is causing serious problems in your life, don’t be afraid to access help, your GP surgery can direct you to an appropriate source. 


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